Skip to main content

tv   U.S. House of Representatives  CSPAN  May 3, 2011 10:00am-1:00pm EDT

10:00 am
have to a great extent the same situation in india and any number places, even malaysia, which was in the same situation. we really need to repeat what we're doing in terms of the amount of funds and things we are pumping into these countries, because a lot of lives and treasure are being wasted. we have to be focused on a lot of -- host: let us get a quick response. guest: george, you touch on is something really important, which is that we tend to treat them as unitary actors, that the president speaks for all pakistan. we know that is not true for the united states, but it is more true of less than it is with pakistan -- more true of us that it is with pakistan. even the intelligence services cannot be considered to be a unitary actor. going forward, we may need to
10:01 am
hold pakistan a little bit tighter than push them farther away. if we do that, then we have to make best use of whatever leverage we have in front of us to make sure that pakistan is not being in a way that is contrary not just to our interests but their interests. host: andrew exum, thank you for being with us this morning. guest: sure. host: you can find exum's blog as well as information about his past. he was an army ranger and an adviser to stanley mcchrystal. that is all for "washington journal" this morning. we go to the house floor. later on, members of congress will be brief behind closed doors about the killing of osama bin laden. have a good morning. host: ca[captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010]
10:02 am
the speaker pro tempore: the house will be in order. the chair lays before the house a communication from the speaker. the clerk: the speaker's room, washington, d.c., may 3, 2011. i hereby appoint the honorable tom mcclintock to act as speaker pro tempore on this day. signed, john a. boehner, speaker of the house of representatives. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the order of the house of january 5, 2011, the chair will now recognize members from lists submitted by the majority and minority leaders for morning hour debate . the chair will alternate recognition between the parties with each party limited to one hour and each member other than the majority and minority leaders and the minority whip limited to five minutes each but in no event shall debate continue beyond 11:50 a.m.
10:03 am
the chair recognizes mr. quigley for five minutes. mr. quigley: thank you, mr. speaker. on the first day of this congress, members took turns reading the constitution on the floor of this house. it was a worthwhile exercise. however, some parts were omitted. there was no recital of the amendment that established prohibition or have slaves be returned to their owners or slaves were 3/5 of the human being. i guess nobody wanted to be the one reading those parts and i can understand that. but it got me thinking. lately that really there has been a lot of talk about the constitution and that's a good thing. the constitution is our national charter. it protects our basic freedoms. it grants powers to the government and puts limits on those powers. all of us in this body took an oath to support it. we should talk a lot about the constitution, but we should talk about it the right way. some of my colleagues seem to
10:04 am
think that we should read the constitution together and we'll all see the light. that the little words on the page will answer all of our questions. for them the framers had all the answers. i guess that's the one reason they wanted to read the embarrassing parts on the house floor. to do that would be to admit that the framers got some things wrong, that their document was a first draft of liberty, a blueprint for justice, not the last word. some call this way of thinking constitutional fundamentalism. when it comes to the constitution, fundamentalism is misguided. let me explain why. no one doubts that some parts of the constitution are meant to be read literally and rigidly. every state gets two senators, you have to be at least 25 years old to be elected to congress, cut and dry. but many of the most important parts of the constitution, the framers deliberately used broad, open-ended language because they wanted their words to be read flexably as times
10:05 am
changed. famous speech, due process of law, these terms don't define themselves. the fourth amendment protects the right of people of searches and seizures. what makes a search unreasonable or a punishment cruel? the document itself doesn't tell us. the constitutional fundamentalists tell us we should interrupt the words of the constitution as they were understood at the time they were written, more than 200 years ago. but they can't really mean that. at that time all felonies were subject to the death penalty. today we consider such punishments clue and unusual. the words the framers chose are not just broad and open-ended. more importantly, they express basic values. to enforce basic values, you need to make value judgments and value judgments change as the world changes. even when the underlying values stay the same.
10:06 am
the supreme court has always understood this. almost 200 years ago the great chief justice, john marshall, made clear that the court was going to read the broad phrases of the constitution differently than it might read a tax statute or a building code. marshall wrote, if we apply this principle of construction to any of the powers of government, we shall find it so pernicious that its operation we shall be compelled to discard it. marshall and his successors in the high court understood that when we phrase the meaning of the constitution in place we limit our capacity to make progress as a people. progrets hasn't come easy. it wasn't until the 1940's that the court applied the first amendment establishment clauses to local states and governments to establish the separation of church and state. it wasn't until brown vs. education that they ruled racial segregation unconstitutional.
10:07 am
and one person, one vote. and not until the 1970's did they have constitutional equality for women. as we interpret the document in a little way we shall found ourselves in a country we did not recognize. constitutional fundamentalism makes difficult choices look easy by taping over the ambiguities of the document and ignoring the complexities of our history. i'd much rather acknowledge the ambiguities than debate and discuss about the complerks its. i think it's significant that when we amend the constitution we don't redact the superseded parts. leaving them in throws an an anecdote about our past mistakes. it undermines he efforts to sanitize our troubled history as many do throughout the world with their own history. i close with the words of thomas jefferson. quote, some men look at constitutions with sanket moan -- sanctimonius. let us follow such examples and believe that one generation is
10:08 am
not as capable of taking care of itself and ordering its own affairs. thank you and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from alabama, mrs. roby, for five minutes. mrs. roby: thank you, mr. speaker. last week my home state of alabama faced the worst natural disaster in the history of the state. my immediate thoughts go out to the families impacted by the storm as well as my thanks to the men and women on the ground assisting in recovery efforts. as of may 1, alabama emergency management agency has confirmed 250 fatalities in alabama from the april 27 storm. although the second congressional district dodged the full force of the storm, elmore county sustained damage and tragically the loss of six lives. my thoughts and prayers go out to all of those who lost loved
10:09 am
ones. since the storm, i have had the opportunity to tour the affected areas in my district and meet with the hardworking men and women working on the recovery efforts. n which i am grateful that he immediately did. over the next coming months i will continue to work with the governor, the alabama delegation and the administration to ensure that critical resources and assistance is getting to those impacted by this horrific disaster. once again, the citizens of alabama are in my thoughts and my prayers for them to get through such a difficult time. mr. speaker, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. the chair recognizes the gentleman from california, mr. miller, for five minutes. mr. miller: i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks.
10:10 am
mr. speaker, members of the house, let me begin by joining my colleagues on both sides of the aisle in praising president obama and our military and our intelligence teams for their extraordinary work in the culmination of the killing of osama bin laden. his death is a very positive step for u.s. counterterrorism efforts. bin laden's death will not erase the pain he caused in his evil acts nor does he mean that americans are still not the targets on those bent on doing us harm. but hopefully his elimination will offer comfort to the grieving families all over the world who suffered at his hands and will diminish the capacity of his network to do us harm. mr. speaker, while americans are expressing the appreciation
10:11 am
heads in disbelief over the choices being made here in the house of representatives. while americans remain focused on jobs in the economy, the tea party republican majority has voted to end medicare and to cut taxes for the richest americans and the largest oil companies. and this week they'll vote to make it harder for students and low-income workers across the country to bring up two bills to end funding for new health care centers where workers and small business employees who cannot get insurance threw their jobs will be able to look for -- through their jobs will be able to look for health care benefits. mr. speaker, they are also bringing up a third bill, the sweeping measures that would in effect make abortion inaccessible to most women despite the fact that the supreme court has ruled that women in the united states of america have a constitutional
10:12 am
right to receive an abortion if she so chooses. with high sky prices and continued unemployment, the republicans must wake up in the morning and think the most important thing to do today is to take away health care from making the wrong choices for our economy and for our future. they have accomplished nothing for the american people in more than three months that they have been in charge. no bill to help create jobs, not one. instead, what have they done? they voted to end medicare. that's right. they voted to end medicare and shift the cost of health care of current and future seniors onto themselves. and in some cases adding nearly $7,000 more in costs per senior starting in the year 2022. they voted to reduce nursing home care for seniors and for the disabled and they voted to
10:13 am
make prescription drugs for senior citizens more extensive. to make it all worse, at the same time they voted to end medicare. they voted to cut taxes from millionaires and billionaires and give tax breaks to the largest oil companies and to extend tax breaks to companies that shift jobs overseas and in fact pay no taxes to the american people. no sense of patriotism for the benefit these companies receive by being american corporations. they chose to give them additional tax breaks even though they paid no taxes under current law. their choices are clear. dangerously clear. end medicare and make seniors pay more for health care but give giant oil companies, the wealthiest in our country, more tax breaks. one of the bills they will bring up this week will eliminate the ability of americans without insurance, including small business employees, to shop and to compare health plans in the state-based exchanges. they've determined to pursue policies to harm working families in order to cater to
10:14 am
their insurance industry friends and radical right-wing supporters. they don't believe that every american should have access to affordable health coverage. health exchanges is one of the most popular and important provisions of the health care law. they are vital for families and small businesses to be able to have access to affordable health care. these exchanges are market-based, they foster competition, they reduce cost and they provide access to health insurance for millions of americans. yes, mr. speaker, americans must scratch their heads every day and wonder why the priorities of the tea party republicans are not consistent with the needs of their families, their children, their job opportunities, their small businesses' vitality. they must wonder every day, why can't this congress start serving the american public? i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the chair recognizes the gentleman from indiana, mr. pence, for five minutes. mr. pence: mr. speaker, i ask
10:15 am
unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. pence: osama bin laden is dead. justice delayed became justice served. and i stand to pay a debt of honor and a debt of gratitude to all of those who brought us to this day. . the the first time most americans heard osama bin laden's name was perhaps from this podium. just more than a week after september 11, we gathered here, president george w. bush, and spoke that name into history, and every day since it has been clear to freedom-loving people across this planet that we had to reach this day. to answer for the tragic and
10:16 am
brutal events visited upon our country on september 11. i rise to pay a debt of honor and debt of gratitude. i commend barack obama -- president barack obama for his decisive leadership. making the tactical decision that is were made, as well as providing our troops with the resources they needed to get the job done and come home safe. i commend his predecessor, president george w. bush, whose tenacity and commitment to the war on terror clearly brought us to this day. i also commend our intelligence community who year upon year never lost sight of the demands of justice. but i mostly rise today to pay a debt of honor and gratitude to the members of our u.s. armed forces. past and present. those sunday night who slid down the ropes, captured and killed osama bin laden, are in our
10:17 am
hearts. but also those over the last 10 years who have made the necessary sacrifices in the war on terror. and i rise today to particularly pay tribute to them. i was here on 9/11. after we had the opportunity for the roads to open, i made my way back to our small home in northern virginia and there with my wife and our children, 6,7, and 8, we gathered for a short family meeting and for prayer before i would come back into the capitol. my little 6-year-old daughter stopped me in the kitchen as i was walking to the car and she said, daddy, i have to talk to you. i said i've got to go. she said daddy, i got to talk to you. i said what? she said, if we have to make a war, do you have to go? and i dropped down on one knee and i threw my arms around that 6-year-old, and i said, daddy's too old.
10:18 am
but every day since i thought of all the daddies and mommies who looked the little ones in the eye, looked their spouses and their parents in the eye and they said, i have to go. and they went, and some of them didn't come home. in the sixth congressional district we have a role of the fallen heroes of the war on terror. i recite them today with the deepest respect and gratitude. lance corporal matthew smith of anderson. private sean ponky of shelbyville. specialist chief chad keith of baitsville. staff sergeant frederick miller jr. of hagerstown. sergeant robert colvin jr. of anderson. specialist raymond white of elwood. lance corporal scott zimbowsky. sergeant jere my wright of shelbyville. master sergeant mike heister of
10:19 am
bluffton. staff sergeant brian keith miller, pendleton. specialist jonathan lamond of richmond. lance corporal andrew whitaker bryant. william justice mcclellan of new castle. private first class jacqueline pauley of muncie. and sergeant jeremy mccrurery of my hometown of columbus. this was a victory for freedom. and as much as it belongs to those who made the decisions, developed the intelligence, who slid down the ropes and stepped into harm's way sunday night, this victory belongs to those who lie in earthen graves, in my district and all over this country, who brought it about. winston churchill said we sleep soundly in our beds because rough men stand ready to visit
10:20 am
violence on their who would do us harm. today i pay a debt of gratitude to a commander in chief, present and past, and to all the members of the armed forces who allow us this day to say, justice served. osama bin laden is dead. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the chair recognizes the gentleman from virginia, mr. connolly, for five minutes. mr. connolly: thank you, mr. speaker. let me congratulate my colleague from indiana on his eloquence. i don't think it could be better said. mr. speaker, one year after the deep water horizon oil spill, america is paying record gas prices. in northern virginia gas that used to cost $3 now costs $4. this gas price hike is the result of instability in the middle east and possible oil speculation.
10:21 am
and as a reminder of our dangerous dependence on foreign oil, sadly our republican colleagues are not advancing legislation to help consumers. their plan would line the pockets of big oil which saw its profits skyrocket 30% with these rising gas prices. fortunately there are positive stetches we can take to promote energy independence and protect consumers to improve vehicle efficiency, and convert oil industry tax breaks into tax relief for consumers. america owns 3% of the world's oil but consumes 25% of its global reserves. the only way to end our dependence on foreign oil and reduce gas prices is by improving automobile efficiency and developing new sources of clean domestic energy. energy independence is going to depend on reducing our oil consumption and shifting to domestic forms of energy like wind, solar, biofuels, and most importantly improved efficiency.
10:22 am
energy independence will save consumers money and protect us from political instability in the middle east. at the end of 2010, congress extended tax credits for biofuels and production of wind and solar energy. those tax credits increased wind energy production by nearly 43% in less than two years. so extending them now is important for energy independence. under the authority of the clean air act amendments, president obama and auto makers recently announced an agreement to improve the efficiency of automobiles by 30% by 2016. this agreement will save consumers $3,000 for each car purchased five years from now. hoors another way of looking -- here's another way of looking at it. if you can save 30% of the pump, better vehicle efficiency would offset the tax price hikes. unfortunately congress is trying to rollback this progress. our speaker has forced through legislation which would repeal much of the clean air act,
10:23 am
undermining our national security. fortunately the senate will not allow that reckless legislation become law. this week the republican leadership in this house will try to short circuit safety rules for the production of oil off america's coast. increasing the likelihood of another deep water horizon catastrophe. their legislation could also allow oil exploration that would impede naval operations in virginia's coast and threaten the chesapeake bay. i do not support these reckless efforts to allow unregulated oil drilling which endangers our coastal economies and national security. i will be introducing an amendment in the nature of a substitute. my amendment would strike the anti-safety language and add a provision to repeal $37 billion in oil company tax loopholes. it would remitt this money equally to licensed american drivers. this amount would give $185 to each driver, the efifflent of reducing gas prices by 25 cents
10:24 am
a gallon. there are many positive steps we can take to promote energy independence and reduce the economic burden of high gas prices. to improve vehicle efficiency, boost production of renewable domestic energy, and end big oil tax breaks in order to help consumers. we should be taking these positive steps instead of endangering our coastal economies with unregulated oil drilling which will do nothing to affect oil prices. with that i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair recognizes the gentleman from illinois, mr. shimkus, for five minutes. mr. shimkus: i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. shimkus: thank you, mr. speaker. today, may 3, 2011, i'd like to take this time to commend the department of state's overseas security advisory council on its 26th anniversary. since 1985 they have provided accurate timely, actionable information on global security concerns.
10:25 am
its constituents number over 4,000, and include businesses, schools, faith-based organizations, and nongovernmental organizations. osac serves as the u.s. government's primary platform for assisting the u.s. private sector confront and mitigate security threats overseas. information is shared via the website and through individual consultations between osac and analysts and its constituency. osac originally reports posted on the website sent to embassies around the world and had been requested by numerous u.s. and foreign government agencies. through its country council program, osac provides a mechanism for the u.s. private sector to gather information and share best practices among the world's leading security experts. country councils are present in over 140 cities and serve as a forum for discussion of time sensitive and country specific security concerns. around the world the london country council is gearing up for the immense undertaking of
10:26 am
the 2012 olympic summer games. members of the council are discussing challenges in the nigerian delta. and councils in mexico are creating strategies for operating amid the violence caused by the drug trafficking organizations. the hong kong consill is focused on deterring cybercrime. over the past 26 years osac has developed into the premiere model for public-private partnership. it is the only government-sponsored organization desoined to address the private security concerns. established in 1985, osac has expanded to include over 4,000 constituents and looks forward to a robust partnership with the u.s. private sector and ensuring the safety of american entities abroad. congratulations to osac co-chairs, diplomatic security
10:27 am
director, from the dell corporation and executive working group, jim, from conocophillips, and proctor and gamble. also want to thank the executive director and others. mr. speaker, i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair recognizes the gentlelady from ohio, ms. kaptur, for five minutes. ms. kaptur: mr. speaker, with gas pricings skyrocketing to over $4 and $5 a gallon, threatening our fragile economic recovery, let me retrace the history of u.s. economic recessions and unemployment. since the 1970's and the relation to global oil markets
10:28 am
and oil prices. both in 1973, during the nixon administration, and then during 1978 during the presidency of jimmy carter, america's economy was subjected to serious harm by global oil kingdom on who our nation already had become too dependent. when gas prices eventually doubled with the unemployment that followed, president carter described that major oil price squeeze as the moral equivalent of war. this chart very vividly shows as the change in unemployment which is the blue line, how that follows every major oil price increase since the 1970's. every spike of gas price increase creates a path of high unemployment that follows. that certainly was true back in 2008 when in fact the oil prices spiked and unemployment went up
10:29 am
triggering our current recession as well. president carter lost his re-election to ronald reagan who won on a campaign of blaming carter for a misery index which back in those days was explained as the sum of unemployment and inflation rate that was due to gas price sticker shock. when gas prices rise above $4 a gallon, that very fact triggers major unemployment here at home. how many times does our american economy have to be hit over the head with a baseball bat before we recognize our could he nun drum. we should -- could nun drum. we should be working full steam ahead rather than coveting our neighbor's goods. if we look at the continuing use of petroleum inside our economy, other than the recession, we are now in, where we had a little bit after dip, all the way going back to the 1970's, every year we have used more and the
10:30 am
redlines show how much more is imported. why don't we invest those trillions and trillions of dollars we are spending in the middle east to import that oil and around the world here in our country? we literally could rebuild energy production capacity and much more from one end of our country to the other and create millions of jobs doing it. america's chief strategic vulnerability is our dependence on imported energy. how many more americans have to die to keep those oil lanes opened? it is no coincidence we have sent our soldiers to fight where the greatest global oil deposits are located. . my goal is to protect our nation against all enemies, foreign and domestic. petro dependence is an enemy on both fronts, foreign and domestic. it's no secret that there are some big businesses, including
10:31 am
oil speculators and a phone ears that are -- and financiers that are making a killing. in 2008 aisle prices trip wired. the great recession we are currently enduring. and recent price hikes threatened our recovery just as our nation and our people are struggling to get back on their feet. look at the profits that the major oil kppings are wringing in with gas prices over $4 a gallon just in the last quarter, exxon raked in $10.7 billion. b.p. brought in $7. billion. chevron earned over $6 billion and the list goes on and on. in one quarter. one quarter. the american people suffered great hardships every time this petroleum addiction rears its ugly head and has done so every
10:32 am
decade consistently and the situation gets worse if anyone is paying attention. our american public becomes the gasoline hostage every time the global markets need an infusion of oil caps due to supply aberrations. we simply can't leave america and our people this vulnerable and we can't keep killing our soldiers to keep those oil lanes open. the biggest force in the world is inertia. people don't know how to change our predicament or don't know how to lose this strategy for our nation. it's no secret that some interests are making a whole lot of money off of the present equation. i win, you lose. mr. speaker, if these economic interests aren't tamed and aren't enemies of our republic, i don't know what is. bill ryder wrote a book "it's
10:33 am
time to come home, america." let's do that by restoring energy independence at home and indeed our very liberty. mr. speaker, i yield back my remaining time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady's time has expired. the chair recognizes the gentleman from oregon, mr. blumenauer, for five minutes. mr. blumenauer: thank you, mr. speaker. it was my great privilege to spend a major portion of the weekend watching young constitutional scholars from portland's grant high school compete in the national constitution competition here in our nation's capital. it was an amazing experience watching these young constitutional scholars debating the fine points of our constitution. and, of course, i had a personal interest with one of the students there, but it
10:34 am
became clear watching the competition that everybody was a winner. as i was watching the finals where they were one of the best top 10 teams in the nation, it was fascinating for me to contemplate what was going on in the much broader context in terms of what this represented. everybody was a winner. the student constitutional scholars, the dedicated coaches and teachers, america was winning. these students were part of tens of thousands across the country who dove into the intra can sees of the constitution over these past years. they delve into its antecedents like the magna carta and the articles of confederation. they dealt with the civil war and the challenges to our constitutional ideals and the
10:35 am
practicality of governance. they pondered the struggle to give all americans the promises embedded in the constitution and the declaration of independence. they exmembers will record their votes by electronic device the conflict between the rule of law and its too often flawed implementation. it was really heartwarming to be able to witness the discussion between the judges, who were all skilled professionals volunteering their time, professors, lawyers, judges and these terrific young citizens. indeed, some of the exchanges were literally rivetting. and i was reflecting on how much easier would be our job here in congress if there were more americans who were part of
10:36 am
this extraordinary experience. these young people have been part of a program for a quarter century now. we've got data that shows its effectiveness. these young people score a third higher than adult citizens on their knowledge of the constitution and civic affairs. and good news for america, looking at this experience over a quarter century, they are five times more likely to run for public office. the bad news is that thousands of young people in every state, the district of columbia, some of the territories, will lose as a result of the inability of congress to figure out how to finance a small portion of the participation that comes from federal money. they are a casualty this year
10:37 am
of the inability of the congress to figure out how to provide that support. i find that ironic because these young people could give congress lessons about the congressional power of the purse, the separations of power, to give us a road map to make sure that these programs are not sacrificed. it's particularly important because a flawed no child left behind that's up for re-authorization doesn't place a premium on civic education. as i see my good friend, congresswoman woolsey, a senior member of that committee, who's fought for years to redirect it. well, the least we could do is to restore the money lost this year as we deal with the budget for the next.
10:38 am
any member of congress who takes the time to meet with the outstanding young men and women from their state who are in our nation's capital today in the aftermath of that contest would be hard pressed to explain to them why they wouldn't and indeed would be inspired to do all they could to make sure this outstanding program continues. thank you, mr. speaker. and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the chair recognizes the gentlelady from california, ms. woolsey, for five minutes. ms. woolsey: thank you, mr. speaker. and, yes, indeed, just to follow-up on the gentleman from oregon, we are in our efforts to re-authorize elementary, secondary education, expanding civics, and art and music. mr. speaker, my first thought when watching the news last
10:39 am
sunday night was about the many people, the many people who have a hole in their hearts and in their homes because of the senseless brutal violence perpetrated by osama bin laden. there was 9/11, of course. but also the 1993 world trade center bombing, the embassy bombings in east africa, the attack on the u.s.s. cole. bin laden is responsible for so much evil and i hope that the families of his victims can now find some measure of peace and hopefully some closure. he is dead but the terrorism threat he represents remains alive and well. the network he created continues to thrive and i believe, mr. speaker, that al qaeda will remain strong as
10:40 am
long as we, the united states of america, continues our policy of aggressive militarism in the middle east. the war in afghanistan remains an epic failure that is bankrupting us morally and fiscally. our nearly 10-year occupation has embolden those who hate america instead of defeating them. it has created more terrorists than it has killed. it is undermining our national security interests, not advancing them. it is making us no less safe -- well, no -- it is making us less safe, not more. none of that changes with the news of osama bin laden's death. just last week a retired army lieutenant colonel from my district, just north of the golden gate bridge, james
10:41 am
mcclauf lynn jr. of santa rosa, california, was killed while working as a contractor training military pilots in afghanistan. he died along with eight others when an afghan pilot turned on his allies and went on a shooting spree during a meeting at the kabul airport. bin laden's death won't bring mcclauf lynn back, nor will it bring back the 1,500-plus americans who lost their lives in afghanistan. the horrors of this war continues unabated. so with osama bin laden's death, i believe that it is time, it is past time for somber reflection, reflection about the policies of the last 10 years and about where we might go from here. it is time to rethink our entire approach to national security. we can save so much in lives
10:42 am
and money and global credibility and in moral authority with a smart security platform that puts diplomacy and development aid before guns and tanks. a platform that uses american power for humanitarian ends, a platform that empowers and invests in the people of afghanistan instead of invading and occupying their country. we have a chance now to change course. the trauma of 9/11 was profound. but it also led to some disastrous happenings from the war in iraq, to waterboarding, to the surge in afghanistan. now that 9/11 -- the 9/11 mastermind is gone, it is time to turn a new page. it has to begin with a swift move toward military
10:43 am
redeployment out of afghanistan. we cannot continue down this road of permanent warfare. the costs are too great. i've ever ever felt more strongly, mr. speaker. that it is time to bring our troops home. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. if no other people seek recognition for morning hour debate, pursuan >> members taking a mandatory break before starting legislative business at noon eastern. when they gavel back in. they'll start work on two measures. repealing parts of the health care law. live coverage of the u.s. house, legislative business at noon here on c-span. right now we'll take you over to the senate foreign relations committee. they came in about 45 minutes ago. >> it is worth -- >> for a look at the situation
10:44 am
in afghanistan. anne-marie slaughter, professor of politics. >> as many of our soldiers often do. at the same time, we need to focus on finding export markets for afghan farmers and entrepreneurs and socially as well as economically profitable ways to exploit afghanistan's mineral sector. the recent agreement by pakistan and india's commerce secretaries to improve trade ties across a wide range of sectors and a new-found confidence among pakistani businessmen that they can compete in india's markets, are promising signs of a willingness to make long held aspirations of regional markets a reality. afghanistan's rich mineral resources are already attracting large-scale investment. with china the winning bidder for a $3 billion project to exploit afghanistan's largest copper mind. the agreement? convince china to build a power plant that could provide electricity to most of kabul and build afghanistan's first railroad which will run to the
10:45 am
chinese province. afghanistan also has a new outlet to the sea, thanks to 1 -- >> we are having audio problems with that senate foreign relations committee hearing. the one looking at afghanistan. hope to resolve that and take you back over to the hearing momentarily. u.s. house come in for their general speeches this morning. as we mention add moment ago we will come back at noon. two bills today, repealing mandatory funding for two programs established by the health care law. over in the senate today, general speeches but we might see some possible debate and vote on a resolution commending u.s. forces and the intelligence community for their successful operation in bringing about the death of osama bin laden. we mentioned that senate foreign relations committee, that's on the situation in afghanistan. there will be a hearing later this afternoon on the house side, homeland security subcommittee looking at the security threat from pakistan. particularly in the wake of the killing of osama bin laden.
10:46 am
that's coming up at 2:00. that will be live on our companion network, c-span3. we'll take you back live now over to senate foreign relations. >> about the performance of our troops which has often been superb. it's not about whether their fight has been worth t we have an overwhelming reason to ensure that afghanistan cannot again offer sanctuary to al qaeda and the fighting to date has brought us to the point where al kide qaeda is severely degraded. it is not about whether coin is right or wrong -- >> we are still having some problems. we are still having some problems with the senate foreign relations committee. trying to get the audio fixed on that. hope to resolve that. if not we can tell you we are taping that and we'll show it to you later in our program schedule. obviously this morning on "washington journal" we spent more time talking about the impact of the death of osama bin laden. ments there.
10:47 am
the "washington post" has this story. the president of pakistan ways in.
10:48 am
there is a washington post editorial piece. he defends his role and his country's role. what do you think? is pakistan a necessary ally? let us go to nebraska. caller: thanks for taking my call. before the pakistan issue is added to the mix, on different national news, there are reporting since 9/11 happened, there have been articles that bin laden was already killed.
10:49 am
this whole charade about him finally being debt now is undercut by of the articles from fighters -- dead now is undercut by the other articles. he has been killed like nine times. first we need to answer the question as to why do we have nine ap stories of him already dead.ing host: what evidence do you need that he was actually killed this time? caller: osama bin laden is like santa claus. he shows up everywhere. many photoshop experts say it is
10:50 am
not the same person in all of these films. it reminds me of santa claus. there are many different santa clauses that show up everywhere. host: what do you think this shows us about pakistan? caller: it has not changed my view of pakistan. they are right there with iran as to whether they are our friend or enemy. if we are concerned about iran having nuclear weapons, we should be more concerned about pakistan. we need to get rid of their nuclear weapons, before we start a war with pakistan that is going to be more serious than what we have seen so far. host: philadelphia, pa., jake on
10:51 am
our democrats line. caller: you cannot make pakistan an enemy. they are still letting us in their country to launch an assault against potential terrorist targets. it is a debacle on their part to allow osama bin laden to stay in their backyard. we need to move forward. what secretaryr of state hillary clinton had to say yes today. >> we are committed to support the people in government as they try to fight their democracy against violent extremists. bin laden has also declared war on pakistan. he ordered the killings of many
10:52 am
innocent pakistani men, women and children. in recent years, the cooperation between our governments, military, and law-enforcement agencies increased pressure on al qaeda and the taliban. this progress must continue. we are committed to our partnership. host: we are talking about the killing of osama bin laden over the weekend. we look forward to hear your comments and your thoughts on our relationship with pakistan. he was found in a town of living in comfort not far from islamabad. caller: this latest disclosure that they killed obama -- osama bin laden, there have been at 3
10:53 am
or four * that they made this announcement over his death, only to be proven it was a fraud or the photo was fake. this time it is the same thing. it looks like a lot of theater. the thing that scares me is what they are planning next. this is a big moment. they need to use this to rule out some other big change. this is a complete phony thing. host: take a look at what's the pakistanident of is singing. many of their soldiers have died. -- is saying. many of their soldiers have died.
10:54 am
let us hear from washington, d.c. caller: i think we need pakistan, even if they are not 100% on our side. you need to keep your friends' clothes and your enemies closer. we need to keep a close eye on pakistan. host: take a look at the "new
10:55 am
york times" piece. they have an extensive story that details what was happening behind the scenes at the white house and on the ground and in pakistan. it led to the location of the al qaeda team. also looking at what happened over the weekend on sunday. president obama and members of his national security team received an update on sunday. a classified document before hillary clinton was blurred before the photo was released.
10:56 am
you can see the looks on everyone's face. let us go to hear about what the reaction is in the muslim world. we have our washington bureau chief joining us on the phone. what is the feeling right now across the arab world as how this is being received? guest: most people welcome this demise. he is the man considered the cause for the innovation into afghanistan and maybe the war in iraq. the headlines of one major newspaper said, the killer has been killed. commentary columnists and people
10:57 am
on television is essentially say that he has been overtaken by the defense in the arab world. they noted the revolutions in egypt and in other places with some political discourse. he was ignored totally. his discourse was rejected intellectually by many people before. too many people, he belongs to a bygone era. some people were raising his concerns about the way he was buried at sea. this is a minority. throughout the arab world, the interest and concerns of people really sway beyond what has been represented.
10:58 am
tell us what people are saying regarding the burial at sea and if it was done in an islamic tradition. guest: some people believe in conspiracy theories. there is no reason to believe that the body was not washed and rap and. in the tradition. -- wrapped in the tradtion. -- tradition. some say it is >> conversation of pakistan from this morning's "washington journal." we are covering hearing about afghanistan. live at 2 on c-span3. here on c-span we are taking you live to the senate foreign relations committee. they have been holding a hearing, got under way about an hour or go ago or so, the
10:59 am
chairman john kerry, live on c-span. >> what's the strategic interest to the united states? what are we trying to protect here? what is in our national security interest with respect to afghanistan per se? ambassador newman? >> thank you, sir. i have very modest goals myself having struggled with this problem. i think we need an afghan army that can carry on the level of fighting that is likely to go on for a long time in afghanistan. something we all agree we are not going to get peace quickly. i believe we need a government that has a modest amount of support so that it can hold us together. >> how much american support do you envision having to be there to stay in that afghan army? >> i see us with a declining slope. i don't want to put myself in the shoes of general petraeus or military commander.
11:00 am
i think that would be excessive. i think over the next year what one should hope to see in the -- would be the transfer out, whether to other places or out, the president's decision, of most of the combat brigades, while those which are partnered with the afghan army probably have to stay. it's basically the model with -- we had in iraq. >> can you give me a ballpark figure? i'm not asking you to be general petraeus, who won't be general petraeus himself in a little while, he'll be c.i.a., give me a sense of that. we are 157 -- 150,000 now. . >> i hate to put figures on it. i would say over a three-year slope that that number probably should come down by more than half, perhaps considerably more than half. i do not know how many
11:01 am
additional trainers -- training forces one is going to have to retain because to sustain itself from the field, the afghan army's also going to need medical support. >> don't you need the ability to measure what the taliban are capable of and what their intentions will be in that period of time? >> i would agree with you. >> is there any way of measuring that? >> i don't know if there's a good way to measure that because -- >> does that matter to us? the taliban aren't harboring al qaeda, if al qaeda doesn't exist, if we have the ability to attack al qaeda from a sufficient platform that exists in the region, why is it the critical interest of the united states? i'm being devil's advocate here a little bit. why is it a critical interest to us what happens between the afghans? haven't they always sought accommodation and won't they seek it anyway? >> i think my answer begins by disputing the premises on which
11:02 am
you began the question, sir. i think what you see is a considerable linkage of al qaeda that you are seeing more foreign fighters, for instance, in the east, the linkages with them are much more fundamentalists as others come in the battlefield. >> let me stop you there so i can get a response from the others. basically, what i want to say to you -- separation is not correct. secondly, if you have a civil war going on in afghanistan, you will see the linkage intensify because the taliban will need the reinforcement of al qaeda. >> so you think the united states needs to be there when -- engaged in a preventative civil war, i.e., or engaged in a civil war status? is that where that takes us? >> i disagree profoundly with
11:03 am
what i just heard. let me make clear what our u.s. policy needs to be and why. the goal should be to make sure that afghanistan is not a major platform of terrorist attacks against the united states or the world. that is our goal. our goal is not to build up the afghan government or have a certain level of u.s. troops. that's a potential means of realizing that goal. i do not think we should do what i would call counterterrorism only, but i do think that should be a more central part of our policy. it should be as agreeable to capacity building. there should be a degree of -- >> how does that distinguish from the idea of building police, building our -- >> the question is one of balance, and the question is one of scale and emphasis. i think that we should have a c.t. -- a counterterrorism policy that's the predominant part. we should try to build up some local compass its but we should be realistic about what it is
11:04 am
we're trying to build up. we are never going to believe -- i believe, accomplish the goals set out here. if we could save $75 billion a year, which i believe is the scale of savings we would get from the kind of policy i'm talking about, that is 1/4 -- 1/4 of the fiscal savings everybody suggests we need on a slope of $300 billion a year. we would get 25% of what we need. through this policy alone. that is an extraordinary bit of progress that we could get, and i believe we could get it without materially affecting the prospects for what our goal is in afghanistan which is to make sure it is not a major platform of terrorist attacks against the united states. >> ok. let me stop you. i want to get dr. slaughter in this. there is something we need to explore very carefully. dr. haas suggests that a goal is a limited one of preventing
11:05 am
platform -- >> afghanistan from -- >> afghanistan being a pretty form for terrorism. dr. slaughter, you have said that our goal is a stable and prosperous afghanistan. now, stable and prosperous afghanistan is first of all what nebulous, but does it really take that to protect the interests of the united states? >> i absolutely agree that our ultimate goal, the reason we're there is to absolutely prevent afghanistan of being a platform for terrorists who are going to attack the united states. our difference is how you can accomplish that goal. i don't think you can accomplish that goal without a political settlement that longer term produces a measure of security, a measure of stability and a measure of self-reliance. the problem with the strategy that richard has articulated, that is the strategy we pride. we did that for three to four years after we invaded -- that we tried. we did that for three to four
11:06 am
years after that. the taliban came surging back. we do not want to be in afghanistan fighting the kind of counterinsurgency strategy we are now, but we proceed that that strategy failed. the issue now is precisely how we can prevent the taliban from taking over in such a way that we're not going to be able to negotiate with the taliban and have them not fight al qaeda unless we have a political settlement. >> we need to dig into this a lot more. we will with my colleagues. my time has expired on this round. so senator lugar and we'll see where we wind up. >> there is another opinion. >> committee will be in recess until we can restore order. folks, you know, this committee has a good tradition of really exploring these issues in a very open and thorough and
11:07 am
unbiased way, and i respect, and i think everybody knows this, everybody's right to their point of view and to make that known. you can choose your forum, but it would really be helpful to us if we could ask people to respect this process and to allow these proceedings to continue without manifestation, interruption, or otherwise. i think every member and every person would appreciate that. senator lugar. >> dr. haass, following through on chairman kerry's questions, if i remember correctly, you recommended through u.s. troop presence gradually diminish to about 10,000 to 25,000 personnel and 12 to 18 months. and you indicated that this
11:08 am
group would support anti-terrorism in afghanistan. let me just try to have in my own imagination. currently our strategy apparently in our operations are very comprehensive, and afghanistan is not a huge country, it's a large one. very diverse situations. where would we place the 10,000 to 25,000 or how would you conceive their operations day by day? >> i'd say three things. one is what i would do a lot also less of. just to be clear, is combat operations against the taliban. i would dramatically reduce and phase out that dimension. secondly, in terms of the
11:09 am
counterterrorism mission, that seems to me a tactical decision, quite honestly, senator. you probably would want to have some sort of pool of forces and then obviously you would want to have it distributed where you want it to face where you'll meet terrorists which are quite few in number. the training mission, again, is a question of where it can be logistically best carried out with afghans either at bases or in the field. some of the best training does not take place in training but actually in the field. so that is -- those are open implementation decisions. the big question is one of division of labor, phasing out combat operations and limiting us to training -- by the way, not just national forces. i'd also believe the united states should be training of selected local forces. we shouldn't put all our eggs
11:10 am
in kabul around police and army. >> therefore, it's conceivable if we had people who are skilled in earnt terrorism, they're on the ground so the original thought of why we are in afghanistan mainly because the attack came from afghanistan we would be able to, hopefully with the intelligence, -- now, secondly, it would be helpful, obviously, if the government and military of afghanistan were fairly stable, but there is a limited training at that point, a few people, rather than 100,000, 200,000, 300,000 people which is mentioned presently. and our questions to witnesses if rarely is mentioned who pays
11:11 am
for this and how many years. those talking indefinitely in the future, a budget which is not part of this picture at all with all of these people because there isn't local income situation. let me take to the taliban. if in fact the taliban continue to be around and as dr. slaughter has said, a three or four-year period of time, they came back and they were a problem, if this is certainly unsaving to us, we'd like to see people in a democratic society without all this, but at the same time the history of the country has been one with the past unis and others which hasn't -- pasthums and others which hasn't been peaceful. isn't it a fact that the taliban will always be around? and as a result our strategy is based on eradicating the country of the taliban, that
11:12 am
really is far-fetched in terms of imagination, if not the taliban some other group that said we'll provide order, we'll provide justice, so forth, as opposed of weighs going on presenty. and in absent of the central government that can get out and administer the situation, isn't it likely there's likely to be a great deal of local government around afghanistan for a long time? so one of the interesting things about your strategy is given the fact this is going to be very unsaving governmental situation, we at least have boots on the ground to get out potential terrorists who might attack us and others around the world. absent that, is it not clear altogether why we are there at all? in other words, we are not in all the other countries that have terrorists, al qaeda, al that back -- shbab, all the
11:13 am
rest. we are visiting afghanistan with a huge portion of our defense budget. initially your ideas are appealing and that's why i want to explore them. make sure my understanding is correct of this. it's clearly running counter to where we've been heading. it's clear in the budget debate we are having presently. and even if your strategy, 10 to 12 to 18 months getting there this will still be an expensive process. something moving people or getting some other organization going. i'd just add finally, our confidence in president karzai's ebbs and flows, unless we're really prepared to present an alternative, he will be the president of the country. there will be a lot of corruption. there always has been. we hope to eradicate that is hardly clear at all. i think we really need to
11:14 am
sharpen our objectives. this is not an exercise in cynicism. it's an exercise in the realities of afghanistan. the history of the place and what is possible in terms of our own security. and what do you say to all of that, dr. slaughter? >> thank you, senator lugar. so i would say the first thing is that richard and i and i think ambassador neumann, at least richard and i agree fighting the taliban is not why we are there. the reason we are there is exactly to prevent terrorist attacks on the united states. the only question is, what is the successful means to that end? when we tried the counterterrorism strategy we couldn't get the intelligence that we needed to be able to actively effectively attack al qaeda. we got osama bin laden because we got intelligence. we couldn't get the intelligence because we -- the taliban were terrorfying villagers, they're still
11:15 am
terrifying villagers. they have no incentive to give us that kind of intelligence. so we move from the kind of strategy that richard advocates to a full counterinsurgency strategy where we said we'll get that temmings by clearing, holding and building and getting the confidence of those villagers. i do not think that can work over the long term. the difference is i'm advocating a political settlement that gets enough stability. this is not going to be some rosey vision of -- rosie vision of afghanistan. but in fact afghan forces have an inseptemberive to fight the taliban ourselves. and we have the ability to stay in the country and get the intelligence we need. so it is a strategy of how you remain in the country sufficient to get the intelligence you need to do what we both agree which is long term to ensure al qaeda cannot come back and use afghanistan as a platform. >> in terms of the intelligence collection, there's no
11:16 am
evidence, intelligence that got us to osama bin laden. has any relationship to whether the taliban were fighting anybody. my picture is we already knew there was an encampment of al qaeda that was about to attack us. most people writing in that period of time indicated we were not particularly vigilant and not really on that track. those written about the subject believe that iraq was the problem and could hardly spend any time at all thinking about afghanistan at the time. my -- i suppose my hope is that if we're talking about any troops being there, they would be of limited number, able to say there is a big camp going out there. don't need intelligence to find it. got some people in there that's some bad actors and maybe we do something about that camp as
11:17 am
opposed to every village, everything in afghanistan. >> i was involved in the policy, as you know, after 9/11. and where i believe the united states could have done more then was to have done a bit more training and so forth. again, i'm not sitting here advocating a counterterrorism-only strategy. there is a place for a limited degree of training, but there is a fundamental difference if we expect to build up an afghanistan, be it through training efforts, diplomatic efforts that will be sufficiently robust, that is going to be a major partner. it's not going to happen. and all intellectual honesty, sir, you have to assume if we had done something that i am suggesting, but even if we don't, i believe we will face a future in afghanistan where the significant postumes will dominate. and where you have taliban or past unanimous, that's where it
11:18 am
will be. it's not to prevent that from happening. it's impossible to prevent given the nature of afghanistan. we ought to try to break the historic link between the taliban and groups like al qaeda. and i believe that that is a link that can be broken. there is enough in the evidence that one should not equate the two. our own military leadership has made such comments and that's the reason i favor having diplomacy. i do not think our long-term goal here, as much as perhaps we wo like it, would be to create the sort of attractive aveplgts by all sorts of human rights and economics and others that we'd like to see. i think that's simply beyond our capacity and what we have to do is accept the fact that we will be conservative and preventing that cannot be the foreign policy in that country.
11:19 am
>> that's a straw man. no one is arguing for some kind of perfect afghanistan that respects human rights. i think we're saying the same thing. you said diplomacy for a political settlement that would indeed negotiate with the taliban to peel them away from al qaeda to create a government that could actually govern with the taliban, with others, pashtuns, so we could decrease our footprint. >> could i join, as well? >> i just -- two things. first, dr. haass' notion, which he expresses brilliantly, is attractive and but there are elements of a mirage here. the notion of going down in 18 months to the levels of forces, we have -- it's taken us the better part of two years to get
11:20 am
in place the adequacy of trainingers that we have now. this -- trainers that we have now. this notion that you can pivot on a dime with large forces is not true. the numbers grossly underplay any kind of serious advisory effort. so if you -- this is a recipe for failure. you build afghan forces, you throw them out after two months without advisors, without backup as green troops and watch them fall apart. you say the policy is a failure. makes no sense with me. secondly, there is a link between negotiations and fighting. if the image we convey with the afghans is that we're about to bail out, the army's going to fall apart because we're not backing out, the advisors are too few, there is nobody on the other side to negotiate. seriously. there is a difference of saying that you'll accept a pashtun
11:21 am
role -- what is the -- >> what is the incentive for them to negotiate now? is there any indication that they are going to negotiate? >> i would have to say at the top leadership i'm skeptical. you heard that frall of us. if part of what we're saying is you -- you heard that from all of us. if you are saying you want us to move quickly from the military i think pulls against the notion that you can have a successful negotiation. i'm dubious you can have it because that is part of your policy that recognize -- as former israeli prime minister said, have to fight as there were no negotiations and negotiate as there were no fighting. if you lose that i think you lose the ability. >> well, i need to recognize senator casey. but i just put on the table the question very haven't boten to even yet and there's a lot more
11:22 am
to explore here and sort of focus in on the mission. but what if you had a sufficient force there in terms of counterterrorism that also made it clear taliban will not take over the country? now, if that is a stated capacity with much less engagement involvement, there is an incentive to negotiate and you vice president pulled the rug out from anybody. i think we need to come back and think about other pieces how you will fit this. senator casey. >> mr. chairman, thank you. appreciate you arranging this hearing. this is a very important hearing among many that we'll have and i'm grateful. and at the risk of some repetition but it's important to get our points across, all of us, i wanted to focus on the nature of this hearing in the sense that we talk about an end game but maybe to focus on the description of an end game. i use as a predicate a visit
11:23 am
that i had in iraq in the summer of 2007. at the time it was about iraq, obviously, and it was in a dinner meeting, a small group of meeting, including general petraeus and then ambassador crocker, and now they're both still engaged, maybe the question would be relevant began, but what i was complaining to both of them as representatives was bush administration was the way then president bush described the end game or the goal, and sometimes his administration and i was complaining about it. i said, win and lose is the wrong way to talk about it in my judgment. victory and defeat, the usual language that we use, i thought was inappropriate and frankly misleading. that was my complaint. ambassador crocker at the time said that his -- the way -- the language he tended to use if not all the time, most of the time was as it relates to iraq was sustainability, stability, two words.
11:24 am
i think the american people need to hear from a lot more of us a basic description of what our goal is in afghanistan, not in a page or a volume but literally in a sentence or two so we can focus on the goal. if we were sitting in that same meeting today in kabul or anywhere and you were sitting there and i asked you the same question, what's the best way to describe it and what is the best -- the best outcome that you could -- that you could articulate in a sentence or even a phrase? and i just ask it to all three of our panelists. dr. haass? >> the sentence i used in my testimony, senator, was a afghanistan characterized by a weak central government, a taliban presence that's
11:25 am
expensive in much of the south and -- extensive in much of the south and east. a small u.s. presence. that to me, it doesn't sound that different, by the way than what we have now is but a smaller u.s. footprint. in my view is about as good as things will get and that's enough. >> you think that's both achievable and successful? >> yes. >> dr. slaughter. >> secure and stable. secure, much lower levels of violence. stable meaning predictable, stable enough so you can invest in some economic activity can regenerate and self-relipet where the afghans are taking the lion's share of the responsibility in terms of safety. in terms of getting there, we are not far apart. it does mean over time, and i agree with ambassador neumann, in terms of training -- from actually fighting to advising so we want to actually give these forces a chance but it means a small u.s. footprint. in my view it will also,
11:26 am
though, requires an overarching political settlement in afghanistan and a larger regional agreement at the same time to actually get us there. but the one sentence is secure, stable and self-reliant. >> ambassador neumann. >> one of the problems i think we have right now is the united states does not have a clear expression. whether it's the expression any of us come up with, we desperately need it. not only for the american people, clearly you have your responsibility, but we are not projecting to anyone in afghanistan a clarity of purpose right now. and that is enormously important and it's debilitating. i don't have perfect words in my head, but i think chairman kerry has put his finger on one key part. that the taliban can't win.
11:27 am
that's not the same as stability or -- but knowing we will persevere to that extent, whether it's counterterrorism, other things, whether it's u.s. forces, there's a lot of issue in there, but knowing the taliban cannot win is a central piece of pakistani thinking, of afghan thinking of what they can and can't count on us. i think the second thing we need to get at -- again, i don't think i have perfect words -- is enough support that afghanistan has a chance to rebuild. i'm dubious about using stability because it is so hard to achieve. for all the issues we disagree on, but maybe it's a good word but it's hard -- it's very hard to get there. but the sense that they have enough support to the stability in a sense where it's their hands. they can still mess it up with
11:28 am
everything we are capable of doing. i do not want to suggest that it depends wholly on us. i say that the taliban cannot win although they can re-enter in some form of negotiations. enough sustainability that afghans can make their own decisions, that's not yet at the bumper sticker kind of level that one needs both for the americans and the afghans, but i think those are the two key pieces. >> one last question with regard to pakistan. i've been to islamabad twice and i plan to go back this year, and obviously the world has changed so dramatically in like a lot of members of congress but like a lot of americans, i have a series of questions of who knew what, when and the details of that. if you had the chance to sit down with pakistani leaders right now in light of what's happened over the last 48 hours
11:29 am
or so, and maybe i'll leave this as a question for the record, but if you could help us formulate some of those questions, that would be helpful for those of us traveling. but i have to say when i was there in 2008, but even more so in 2009, there was a sense then that the relationship and especially on intelligence sharing was getting better. that's what i heard from our people. and that was encouraging. obviously there's at best. maybe this is too optimistic but at best a very mixed record in light of what happened, a very poor record. if you can formulate those questions and help us better articulate them, that would be great. i'll put that in the record as a question but thank you. >> senator carter. >> thank you very much for your testimony. i think as it relates to those
11:30 am
things happening around in afghanistan, i think general petraeus and others asked they be able to see through this fighting season and i think most people in this body are willing to let them go through this fighting season at present. i think we're not really talking about something imminent today. but let me just ask this question. we had -- we have other things on our mind -- to all three of you briefly. would you all agree that what we're doing in afghanistan is not a model for the future? i think it's a simple yes, no. >> first, yes, i agree it's not a model. second, if i had to do a fifth war, and i've been in four, i would devoutly like the dynamic effective leadership on our side. >> so this is not something we can do in country after country after country, everybody agrees
11:31 am
that this is not a sustainable model, is that agreed? >> i agree. i do agree we cannot be engaged in country after country with this degree of responsibility for both security and building basic institutions. i do not think that is the model that works going forward. >> senator corker, not only would i agree, but since the answer for everyone is yes, and i suspect you think it's yes as well, it begs the question, then why is it the model for afghanistan? and i would simply suggest it should not be and cannot be for any longer. >> one of the things i am not as much an expert as you are on foreign relations, it's easy to enter but it's very difficult to leave. the reasons for being in a place continue to evolve. but let me just ask this so we keep talking about safe haven, and i'm confused, even as to what a safe haven is. i mean, we saw recently where
11:32 am
we saw a pakistan neighborhood can be a safe haven. what does it mean to safe haven that makes it more of a safe haven than some of the other places that we might consider having 100,000 troops? >> so i think we have to go back to where we were before. if the taliban either controlled an enormous part of afghanistan unchallenged ar were it to actually take over the government again, then effectively you have the ability of al qaeda and other terrorist groups to move freely back and forth from pakistan as the pakistanis, the more serious they get they move over to afghanistan. we have to remember where we came from. indeed, i don't think we would have been able to actually get osama bin laden had we not driven him out he was with the
11:33 am
taliban, put him in afghanistan, put him on the run. we finally grew intelligence from all over the place to actually get him. but we can't think that that -- leaving that area alone and leaving afghanistan possibly still open to a government that would be completely willing to host al qaeda and other terrorist networks is not a threat to us. that's where people are getting trained. that's where attacks are still getting mounted. we do have to have a government in afghanistan that does not host al qaeda. >> but i'm confused bus i know you keep -- you said, i think, we shouldn't fight the taliban. we aren't fighting the taliban. basically we are fighting criminalality in afghanistan. we're -- crim nationality in afghanistan. we're fighting criminality, people getting locked up in prisons, people that is not extremists, we saw maybe 80 that would be taliban. mostly what we're fighting is
11:34 am
criminality. i hear you and dr. neumann saying two very different things. i'm confused. i think you say we shouldn't fight the taliban. he says we should be fighting the taliban. it's very confusing to me what the two of you are saying. >> i'm happy to -- so we fought the taliban initially because the taliban were in afghanistan and they were -- they hosted al qaeda. >> the taliban today? >> that's right. the taliban today, a major resurgence, we're degrading them now, but was in once again in a position to take back over the government. so we have pushed them back to the extent that they should not rule afghanistan. in that sense i completely agree with ambassador neumann, they should not rule afghanistan. how we're going to get there? we can get there by continuing to fight them. i don't think that's a strategy that's successful. or we can get there by
11:35 am
negotiating with them in such a way to allow political settlement where they're part of the government. they are, as richard says, there are many different types of taliban. if they will no longer host al qaeda. and to senator kerry's question, i think the death of osama bin laden gives us an opening to try again to see how much they're willing to negotiate. there are many different impacts of that death and we should take that as an opportunity. so i'm suggesting we should stop fighting them, we should cut a deal which allows for a more stable government in afghanistan which will not openly host al qaeda. >> probably easier said than done. i would agree with that. i just want to read a quote from secretary gates on february 17. being able to turn security over to the afghan forces against a degraded taliban is our ticket out of afghanistan.
11:36 am
there's number of other questions i would have liked to asked, but i think the one thing that will stun the american people on the ground in afghanistan is how much we are investing in this country. and what we're investing in. and i think that we have distorted greatly, hugely their expectations, much about their culture, with just the vast amount of money that's coming in. let me ask the two of you if you agree with secretary gates and should we very abruptly change the dynamic of civilian investment that we have ongoing in afghanistan and really focus more on this degraded taliban in a quicker exit out of there once we feel we've accomplished that after this fighting season? >> first, i agree with secretary gates. i think a lot of what we are disagreeing on the panel is an issue of how fast you can do that without blowing it by trying to go too fast.
11:37 am
secondly, i do think we are overspending on the economic side. i think we are fueling too many bad tendencies, including a dependency. we're paying people to do things they ought to do themselves. there's a fair amount of tension, also, between the military spending, so you need to look, i think, of -- >> both of it is -- >> there's a lot of rapid spending for a very short-term results that are not sustainable, and i don't think that they are as essential. i would be careful about the draconian cuts. i think we're overspending there. i do think security -- let me put it this way. the afghan army does not actually have to win the war for many of our goals. it has to be capable of not losing it. that changes the negotiating
11:38 am
dynamic, that changes the security situation. i do think it is our way out. what i am saying, though, is i think this process needs to be looked at very hard so that we do not destroy whatever chances we've created for success by suddenly moving out much too quickly. there's stuff on record of how to get there. i think we should be very careful not to jump to kind of totally politically inspired timetables of numbers and speed, recognizing that you'll never have as much time as, you know, any general or any ambassador would like. i'm not an ambassador any more. i do testify only for myself, not to the american academy or anybody else. >> well, thank y'all for your
11:39 am
testimony. we will look at civilian spending. i agree it's happening through the military and through our state department and hopefully that's something since all three of you have very different -- two -- two different views but all three of you agree on the fact that we're spending too much money on the civilian side, is that -- >> i don't want to be on the record of saying -- i think we're spending it in ways that is problematic but overall i think we want to pull down on the military spending and very carefully monitor spending on the civilian side. i think -- we're putting too much in at one time, i'd agree with that. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. senator menendez. >> i look at our situation in afghanistan. i look at $10 billion per month is the cost of our
11:40 am
counterinsurgency effort. i look at nonmilitary contributions to afghan reconstruction and development. from 2002 to 2010, almost $23 billion. and expected to increase, obviously, as we see a transition to safelyian mission. and i say to myself, even if we are willing to make the enormous economic commitment to build a democracy and to fund the necessary security elements at a cost of tens of billions of dollars per year, what's the likelihood of our success? seems to me the government is corrupt, our working relationship is strained, to say the least. our focus on building security forces is challenged because its membership largely pashtuns to the south. is there a plan that can actually work here? >> i would say no.
11:41 am
i would be quite explicit. i'd say our policy won't work and it's not worth it even if it did work. so i would actually go beyond that. i just think even the scale of the challenges we face around the world, our fiscal situation, i cannot find the strafeemingic rational -- strategic rationale for the things we're doing in afghanistan. i think there is a negligible chance, senator, that it will work. it increases the questions that i believe need to be raised about the direction and scale of u.s. foreign policy. >> senator, i don't think we're trying to build a democracy in afghanistan as an end. once again, our goal is to ensure there is not a government in afghanistan that hosts al qaeda an other terrorist networks in such a way that they can freely plan
11:42 am
and execute attacks against the united states. that's why we went in. that's why we're there. we succeeded very quickly early on. we took our eye off the ball. the taliban started coming back. if the taliban were to take over tomorrow they would once again host al qaeda. we would not be able to actually be in country to be able to get the intelligence, to be able to do what we need to do. so our focus still has to be a government in afghanistan that does not host al qaeda and is not defeated by the taliban. with that i think we can get to a secure, a stable and an increasingly self-reliant afghanistan rather than doing it by trying to build the country from the ground up, we need to do it politically, diplomatically, keeping our forces there by reaching a political settlement and a larger regional settlement. every other country in that region has an absolute stake. >> how much time? >> i think we can do this in a
11:43 am
couple of years. i mean, i think we can start the political negotiations immediately. and the pace of transition does depend on how well the afghan forces perform but increasingly there's some evidence that some are performing well. and we can play in an advisory capacity. we should not be fighting our battles for them. >> this administration several years ago decided to -- words of the president, to take the war the fight to the taliban in south and east of the country. we became a protag nyse in the afghanistan civil war. i thought it was an incorrect decision then. i believe it's an incorrect decision now. i do not believe we should believe that the taliban will take over. i think there is pushback particularly in the north and west of afghanistan. i do think, however, they are likely, no matter how we make enroads in the south and east, but i would not assume for
11:44 am
second the taliban enroads equate into al qaeda return. that's a testable proposition. there's a lot of evidence to suggest the taliban would not do it. that's the reason we should talk to them, and if they were ever to do it that's the reason we should attack them. but i do not believe we shouldn't base u.s. policy on that. to me truly unproven assumption. i would say one other thing. i do not believe the goal dr. slaughter is articulating of a quote-unquote self-reliant afghanistan is a reasonable goal. i would say would not simply take us several years. i think that's an open-ended commit jt to the united states, military -- commitment to the united states, militaryaryly and economically. given all else, we need to worry about in the world and given what we need to worry about here at home. >> the chairman will give you more time.
11:45 am
i'm happy to -- i want to get one more question in before my time expires. recently vice president biden was supposedly -- reports said he favored a more limited mission for afghanistan designed solely to interrupt al qaeda in afghanistan and pakistan. that approach obviously envisions is smaller presence in afghanistan and advocates of this approach is sure that the government of afghanistan is not a fully legitimate partner because of widespread government corruption. counterterrorism strategy relying more heavily on special operation forces to track and kill selected mid-level insurgent commanders which have previously been shown to be effective and which can be used to attack al qaeda and taliban sanctuaries in pakistan would be a better approach. what are your views on that approach as an alternate? and why -- what's the argument
11:46 am
-- i guess it goes back to the original question -- if you don't believe that's a good approach, what's our argument for a broader counterinsurgency strategy than a targeted, more limited counterterrorism strategy? i always thought we should have a counterterrorism strategy, and i -- i've been supportive of the administration so far but i'm having a hard time as we move forward. give me why one over the other. >> no one said you don't want that piece in the strategy. i think the big dabblet with trying to have -- dability with portraying as a solely counterterrorism strategy is that i believe that is a strategy which first of all it requires a lot of on-the-ground presence to make it work.
11:47 am
we've all said that. second, it is -- >> more than we have now? >> no, not more than we have, but i believe what we get if you have a strategy reduced to that that's not focused on doing anything with and for afghanistan is a strategy that invariablely turns afghans increasingly against us to the point that that strategy fails as a sole strategy. if all -- if our purpose has nothing to do with the purpose of afghans who have to live in their country, then taliban rule or pretty much anything else that gets us out and ends that becomes an improvement. so if you really want to create the reaction to foreigners that so many talk about, have a strategy that is based only on fighting our enemies and doing nothing more afghanistan. i don't mean we have to be in a total build a democracy, but it's a -- if you deal only in extremes, if you deal with the kind of extreme, the press at
11:48 am
least portrayed the vice president as having, very small u.s. forces just hit terrorists, i think that becomes a complete failure. i do have -- was very clear -- a serious difference of how the much strategic difference we have here. my feeling is what you will get if we have something that can be defined as a loss, first of all, you have a huge propaganda victory for those considered at war with us and continue that war. i don't know how you measure the consequences but i haven't heard of one side quiting in a war successfully. second, i think in the context of the likely civil war in afghanistan, something much larger than the fighting only in the pashtun south, you draw in pakistan, you draw in iran. russia gets drawn in. you end up with an instability that royals all of central asia. i suppose we can turn our back
11:49 am
on it. i personally believe in that kind of situation, fear india might lead the pakistanis to a much stronger support for radicalism and they will be unlikely to dole with their own radicalism at the same time and that also leads to greater instability of pakistan. i find this a really frightening prospect and one that scares me enough that i would stick with things, although looking for ways to spend less, which we can to over a year or two, cutting troop numbers, but i think we need to try to turn over to afghans at a reasonable pace. that has not yet been tried. we are only arriving at the point where we start trying it. we ought to see how it works. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. there are several things which motivate my thinking on this. first is the sense of history. afghanistan has been a grave
11:50 am
yard of empires, nations that have come to this country in an effort to repress. they have a long history of failure. secondly, this is the longest war in american history and there's no end in sight. when ambassador neumann -- and the third is the fact that i think the road to kabul is paved with good intentions. when you look at a corrupt regime running this country, when you look at $10 billion to $12 billion monthly payment, much of which is being wasted and portions of which are being diverted to fund our enemy, you have to ask yourselves, how long can we sustain this? mr. haass, i read your testimony and i was cheering you on until i read the last
11:51 am
paragraph. i have to ask you about it. here's what you said, "resolution of the ongoing conflict by military or diplomatic means is highly unlikely and not a realistic basis for u.s. policy." i want to ask you about that. if this is about money then spending or wasting it is very hard to justify. but it's about a lot more. if you believe that resolution of this conflict by military means is highly unlikely and not a realistic basis for military policy, how can we send one more american soldier to fight and die in afghanistan? >> i cannot believe the u.s. interests to the extent they exist in afghanistan require a resolution of the conflict. that's good news because we're not going to get a resolution of the conflict, sir. but we can maintain or protect ourselves or our core
11:52 am
interests. our core interest is that afghanistan ought not to be a launching pad for terrorist attacks against us or the world. we can do that, i believe, with a degree of counterterrorism presence and activity and a degree of limited focus training on afghan, local and national troops. i believe we can protect our core interests with a modest investment. so i'm trying to come up with not the proverbial middle course bus it's closer to one end than the other, but i don't believe the answer is withdrawal. >> so those of us, many of us who face this boat face two boats on iraq and afghanistan. 23 of us voted against the war in iraq. i believe that was the right vote. i voted in favor of going into afghanistan. i voted for going after al qaeda for what they did to us on 9/11 and to find and if necessary kill osama bin laden. now, here we are almost 10 years later. and i have to tell you, if you
11:53 am
would have asked me whether i was signing up for the longest war in american history which has no end in sight even after the killing of osama bin laden, i would have to seriously say that wasn't the bargain. that wasn't what i thought i was voting for. now the question i have is this -- if our goal in afghanistan, as dr. slaughter has said, and i think you just said, is to prevent terrorist attacks on the united states, why are we limiting this to afghanistan? aren't there other countries in the middle east that are also harboring terrorists, wishing ill to the united states? aren't there countries in africa? why haven't we drawn the line to say, we'll stay until we reach a good enough solution in afghanistan? >> well, it's the same approach i would actually suggest to these other countries. what i'm trying to do, must be a drafting problem and i wasn't clear. i am trying to scale down dramatically the u.s.
11:54 am
involvement and investment in afghanistan much more akin to what we have been doing in other countries like yemen and somalia. i want the emphasis to be on counterterrorism, a degree of training, but i agree with you. i don't believe coming up to something senator corker said before you arrived, this is not a template that's sustainable for any other country. i don't think it's a template that ought to be sustained in afghanistan. the war you signed up for 10 years ago, and i think you made the right vote in signing up for afghanistan after 9/11, was a limited war. >> yes. >> this war has morphed into something much more. we have basically allowed ourselves to become a protag nyse in a civil war -- protagonist in a civil war. we need to have a more limited mission, which is the one you correctly signed up for and i think that limited mission is both affordable and in the interest of the united states. i do not believe the expanded mission that the united states has allowed itself to be drawn
11:55 am
into is not affordable or justifiable or defends our core vital national security interests. >> and it's calling on us to send our fighting men and women to fight and die. >> absolutely. i agree with you on that. >> so this -- we are now in a very sterile conversation about diplomacy and foreign policy. the reality is they're fighting and dying over there and the question is how long will we keep sending them? >> senator, i think the answer is that there's the -- the united states does have a vital national interest to make sure that afghanistan does not become, again, and is not -- this is similar to other countries -- a place where terrorists can act with impunity. that is something i believe, because it is a vital national interest, our armed forces would gladly be involved with. again, the problem with afghanistan is we've allowed our mission to grow. we've had classic creep in objectives and that's something i believe is not in the national interest of the united
11:56 am
states. >> dr. slaughter. >> so, again, we're not disagreeing about the end game here. we all agree that we need to drawdown our troops substantially. i think the president agrees with that. where i would differ with richard is we tried a limited counterterrorism strategy that when you voted originally we drove the taliban out very fast, then we moved to a limited counterterrorism strategy. after three or four years we turned around and the taliban were deeply resurgent. we did not choose to be part of a civil war. we realized that we were at risk of losing all the gains we made. we had to go back in with a counterinsurgency strategy. >> let me ask you this question -- isn't it not true? they tell us we can gather all of the known al qaeda, active al qaeda in afghanistan in this room, in this room and yet we are spending $10 million or $12 billion a month with a war with the taliban which i've asked this basic question, can we achieve what we want to achieve
11:57 am
in afghanistan without defeating the taliban? >> we can achieve that if we have a stable government in afghanistan that includes, part of the taliban, that does not host al qaeda. i think we can agree if we get to an agreement if the taliban can meet certain basic conditions, they can be part of the government and does not host al qaeda, then our interests are served. i do think we can get there. >> do you believe the karzai government can be the host for -- >> i think we are now in position where we have pushed back enough and our troops have succeeded in pushing back enough that we are now in a strong enough position to enter in negotiations that will not just be the karzai government. it will be a coalition government with a set of conditions that will then allow us to dramatically pull down our forces. we have had to push back through counterinsurgency because of what we lost through a pure counterterrorism strategy. >> if that's our goal then negotiations should have started yesterday.
11:58 am
>> i could not agree more. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> let me follow-up quickly. dr. slaughter, you said the goal would be this government that has the taliban as a coalition, having negotiated that. why is it necessary to have that? why couldn't you simply have a government that is fighting for its own definition and the taliban are outside of it and you have an ongoing stalemate? it's their struggle. and while we are aligned with that government that's fighting it, we have an arrangement where we have a platform, we're doing counterterrorism, we're making sure the taliban are not harboring any interests and we also can guarantee they won't take over. >> so -- >> why isn't that adequate? why do we have to go to that next tier? >> with respect, we have a messy stalemate of the kind you're describing and richard
11:59 am
haass is describing we have 100,000 u.s. and ally troops. if we pull out those troops i do not believe we would have a karzai government defending its interests. i think you would see major taliban advances. so we have to get a political solution. >> nobody has said pull out. people have said reduce. big distinction. >> and i think we're agreed that if you can hand over to the afghan forces, and we maintain an advisory role, then that can continue, although it's still not as strong as a government that actually has some taliban that's part of it so there is some kind of settlement. >> senator, can i say something? i actually think the model you're suggesting is much more realistic. the idea that we're -- >> we're going to break away from the senate foreign relations committee hearing with a reminder that this continues until about 12:350er7b and you can continue to watch online at c-span.org. we're leaving now because the u.s. house is gaveling in
12:00 pm
momentarily. they will get back to pledge work with a couple of bills, repealing parts of the year-old health care law, bills aimed to deny funds for the health care exchanges and for the health care centers and schools and votes expected mid afternoon and late afternoon in the u.s. house. in the senate today, possible debate and possible vote, too, on a resolution commending u.s. forces and the intelligence community for their successful operation in bringing about the death of osama bin laden. you've been watching a senate hearing on afghanistan. there is a house hearing on pakistan this afternoon on c-span3. now live to the house floor on c-span. the speaker: the house will come to order. the prayer will be offered -- the speaker pro tempore: the house will come to order. the prayer will be offered by our guest chaplain.
12:01 pm
the echaplain: most holy god, creator and sustainer of the universe, we come to this chamber today with humility and expectation. we know you have appointed our elected members and and capitol hill staff for such a time as this. faith in you brings unfold -- untold blessings to hearts, and homes. they say to whom much is given, much is expected. endow our leaders with good health, strengthen them in body, mind, and soul for the busy day ahead. grant them your wisdom, peace, and joy in this season of fruitful labor and may we all reap a harvest of righteousness
12:02 pm
ourselves and our citizens. in your name i pray, amen. the speaker pro tempore: the chair has examined the journal of the last day's proceedings and announces his approval thereof. pursuant to clause 1 of rule 1, the journal stands approved. the pledge of allegiance will be led by the gentleman from new jersey, mr. payne. mr. payne: i pledge allegiance to the flag of the united states of america and to the republic for which it stands, one nation, under god, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. the speaker pro tempore: the chair will entertain requests -- 15 requests for one-minute speeches on each side of the aisle. for what purpose does the gentleman from pennsylvania rise? the gentleman from pennsylvania is recognized for one minute. >> thank you, mr. speaker.
12:03 pm
where does our oil come from? much of it comes from offshore rigs. from the north sea to the south china sea, there are thousands of rigs pumping oil that eventually finds it way to the market. the need for oil is grow -- drilling for oil is increaseing in brazil and other countries. 2011 is about the last time the united states did not hold an offshore lease sale. the only way to increw -- decrease gasoline prices is increase domestic supply. if we don't act, we will see production fall this year. the american people want to get back to work but high energy prices are holding back job growth. american jobs are on the line, that's why now is the time to boost american energy.
12:04 pm
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from rhode island rise? >> to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. >> over the last several weeks, americans all across this country have been nervously eyeing their neighborhood gas stations, waiting and watching as gas prices rise have forced many to fill their tanks for no less than $4 a gallon. 24 underscores the work by families across the nation. they can no longer afford the price of gasoline and urgent help is needed. as gas prices climb, profits continue to soar for big oil. we've got to find solutions now and end the $4 billion in tax breaks paid to big oil. i'm delivering a letter today to the speaker asking him to bring legislation already drafted to the floor for a vote that would release oil from the strategic petroleum reserve and
12:05 pm
legislation aimed at preventing big oil from participating in price gouging schemes. these are two measures which have been introduced to the house to provide relief to the consumers from the rising price of gasoline that threatens our economy and the well being of americans throughout the country. i hope the speaker will put these on the call dan -- calendar. thank you. . the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from new jersey rise? >> to address the house for one minute and to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey is recognized for one minute. mr. payne: mr. speaker, this upcoming september 11 will mark the 10th anniversary of the most horrific act of terrorism executed under the leadership of the now deceased osama bin laden. we will never forget the images of burning buildings crushing -- crashing planes and americans running for their lives, 3,000 people. never came back home that tuesday and families will again
12:06 pm
remember the last time they hugged their loved ones goodbye. what will be different this september 11 is that osama bin laden will no longer be able to celebrate the destruction he caused then and the lives he destroyed. president obama, we thank you for a superb operation. thank you for having the courage to make the decision so many would have backed away from. because of president obama's team of experts, this risky mission was backed by sound information, sound facts and accurate calculations. the mission was clear, get osama bin laden, and that is exactly what happened. this is truly a mission accomplished. i commend our commander in chief, barack obama, for his intelligent execution. this is not a celebration of death. this is a celebration of justice, courage, drox, and this is a celebration of -- courage, democracy.
12:07 pm
thank you. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from michigan rise? >> to speak to the house for one minute and to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan is recognized for one minute. >> thank you, mr. speaker. mr. clarke: this past sunday i participated in one of the largest sitdown dinners ever held. it was hosted by the detroit branch of the naacp. and there we heard from and we honored the conscience of this house, representative john lewis. the event was titled "the site for freedom dinner," and some of those freedoms worth fighting were economic in nature. the freedom to own a home that won't be unfairly placed in foreclosure. the freedom to work a job and not be laid off because you're outsourced. the freedom to receive health
12:08 pm
care, especially health care guaranteed by medicare and not have to go broke or bankrupt paying for it. these opportunities should be available under our legal system to all americans equally. mr. speaker, i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back his time. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from california rise? >> ask permission to address the house for one minute and to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from california is recognized for one minute. >> thank you, mr. speaker. the american people want to know, where are the jobs? after 17 weeks of controlling the house, the republicans have no plan to create jobs and no plans to spur economic growth. ms. lee: instead, they proposed a budget that puts our country on a road to ruin. they want to end medicare, gut medicaid, strip funding for pell grants and elementary and secondary education for our students while hobbling our nation's transportation
12:09 pm
infrastructure. yet again, this week republicans are offering slogans instead of solutions. drill, baby, drill. kill the bill. these slogans don't amount to a plan to create jobs or guarantee access to health care in america. instead of another very cynical attempt to repeal health reform and perpetrate their war on women and instead of offering oil companies free rein off our coast we should be working to helping the unemployed and create jobs. we must not forget the 99ers and we must help them, people that moved out of their unemployment benefits that have maxed out and we must stimulate job creation. democrats have a plan while republicans can only offer rhetoric. i yield the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back her time. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from maryland rise?
12:10 pm
ms. edwards: i ask permission to address the house for one minute and to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized for one minute. ms. edwards: thank you, mr. speaker. while all the cards are on the table, the republicans want to reduce medicaid to a mere block grant program and drastically alter the federal state partnership that's been struck for over 45 years. the g.o.p. budget argues that under a block grant program, quote, states will no longer be shackled by federally determined program requirements. sounds nice, right? but, mr. speaker, what they really mean is that states will no longer have to meet standards that ensure quality, delivery of service and eligibility. the g.o.p. budget argues that block grants will improve health care safety for seniors and low-income families. again, sounds right, mr. speaker. sounds wonderful. but they fail to conveniently mention that the states would be required to spend below projected growth fortsing governments to make up the difference by increasing spending. again, that's a fat chance in
12:11 pm
this environment. and so what they really want to do is cap enrollment, limit mandatory benefits and lower provider reap bursments. our doctors, our seniors and our low-income families deserve better. with that i yield. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yield back. does the gentleman from delaware seek recognition? mr. carney: to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from delaware is recognized for one minute. mr. carney: thank you, mr. speaker. today i'd like to recognize two significant athletic achievements that were recently announced in my home state of delaware. in march, the st. marks high school fool team was named team of the year by the delaware sports writers and broadcasters association. this fall st. marks finished with an undefeated 12-0 record and captured their first football title since 1978. also last month, university of delaware sophomore alana was named player of the year in delaware after earning first team all-c.a.a. honors in
12:12 pm
basketball for the second straight year. as the st. marks alumnist and former high school and college athlete and coach, i know the hard work and commitment that goes into achieving success at such a high level. i also know that high school and college athletes learn lessons about teamwork, competition and leadership that will serve them well for the rest of their lives. and so i'd like to once again congratulate alana, st. marks high school football coach, jim wilson and his staff, and each member of the team. we in delaware wish you well and hope for your continued success. thank you. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time.
12:13 pm
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from new york rise? mr. reed: mr. speaker, by the direction of the committee on rules, i call up house resolution 236 and ask for its immediate consideration. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the resolution. the clerk: house calendar number 32. house resolution 236. resolved, that at any time after the adoption of this resolution the speaker may, pursuant to clause 2-b of rule 18, declare the house resolved into the committee of the whole house on the state of the union for consideration of the bill h.r. 1213, to repeal mandatory funding provided to states in the patient protection and
12:14 pm
affordable care act to establish american health benefit exchanges. the first reading of the bill shall be dispensed with. all points of order against consideration of the bill are waived. general debate shall be .confined to the bill and shall not exceed one hour equally divided and controlled by the chair and ranking minority member of the committee on energy and commerce. after general debate the bill shall be considered for amendment under the five-minute rule. the bill shall be considered as read. all points of order against provisions in the bill are waived. no amendment to the bill shall be in order except those printed in the report of the committee on rules accompanying this resolution. each such amendment may be offered only in the order printed in the report, may be offered only by a member designated in the report, shall be considered as read, shall be debatable for the time specified in the report equally divided and controlled by the proponent and an opponent, shall not be subject to amendment, and shall not be subject to a demand for division of the question in the house or in the committee of the whole. all points of order against
12:15 pm
such amendments are waived. at the conclusion of consideration of the bill for amendment the committee shall rise and report the bill to the house with such amendments as may have been adopted. the previous question shall be considered as ordered on the bill and amendments thereto to final passage without intervening motion except one motion to recommit with or without instructions. section 2. at any time after the adoption of this resolution the speaker may, pursuant to clause 2-b of rule 18, declare the house resolved into the committee of the whole house on the state of the union for consideration of the bill h.r. 1214, to repeal mandatory funding for school-based health center construction. the first reading of the bill shall be dispensed with. all points of order against consideration of the bill are waived. general debate shall be confined to the bill and shall no exceed one hour equally divided and controlled by the chair and ranking minoritymember of the committee on energy and commerce. after general debate the bill shall be considered for amendment under the five-minute rule. the bill shall be considered as
12:16 pm
read. all points of order against provisions in the bill are waived. no amendment to the bill shall be in order except those received for printing in the portion of the congressional record designated for that purpose in clause 8 of rule 18 in a daily issue dated may 2, 2011, and except pro forma amendments for the purpose of debate. each amendment so received may be offered only by the member who caused it to be printed or a designee and shall be considered as read if printed. at the conclusion of consideration of the bill for amendment the committee shall rise and report the bill to the house with such amendments as may have been adopted. the previous question shall be considered as ordered on the bill and amendments thereto to final passage without intervening motion except one motion to recommit with or without instructions. . the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized for one hour. mr. reed: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield the customary 30 minutes to the gentleman from
12:17 pm
colorado, mr. polis, pending which, i yield myself such time as i may consume. during consideration of this resolution, all time yielded is for the purposes of debate only. i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. reed: house resolution 136 provides one rule for consideration of h.r. 1213 making in order all amendments that comply with the rules of the house that gives all members an opportunity to preprint pair amendments in the congressional record and have them considered on the floor. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. reed: i yield myself such time as i may consume. we are here today to offer a rule to allow us to debate h.r. 1213 and h.r. 1214. h.r. 1213, which would repeal mandatory munding provided to states in the patient
12:18 pm
protection and affordable care act to establish american health benefit exchanges, h.r. 1214 which would repeal mandatory funding for school-based health center construction. quite simply, our country is broke and we cannot continue to spend money like we have in the past. slush funds and unlimited tasks on the treasury are the first to go. they do not improve care, do not lower cost and we cannot afford. the american people sent a clear message last november. obamacare is mot the answer. stop spending money our country doesn't have. money we are borrowing and spending on the backs of our children and grandchildren who will be left footing the bill. h r. 1213 introduced by the distinguished chairman of the energy and commerce committee, who has been a leader in this fight, repeals the provision to give the sec retear of health
12:19 pm
and human services a blank check to determine how much to facilitate enrollment in the state health care exchanges set up by the underlying bill. the law includes no definition of what that means. for example, 100% premium subsidy for individuals to enroll in the exchange would not be prohibited under this statute. in the years since obamacare was enacted it has already become clear the law set up an unworkable and unaffordable system. there have been countless waivers given out, slush funds such as this to continue to allow the government to push more money on the states force them to enforce provisions that don't make sense and don't work. just because the authors of obamacare couldn't determine the amount necessary to fund the programs does not mean the american taxpayers should allow the secretary to cash this
12:20 pm
blank check. secretary sebelius testified that there are no monetary limitations on the size of the funds. c.b.o. estimates reduction of spending by an estimated $14.6 billion over the next 10 years would be achieved by successful passage of this bill. that is just an estimate. with a blank check, the spending could be much higher. mr. speaker, i submit giving any executive branch official a blank check is a bad idea. particularly when we already have a $1.6 trillion deficit this year alone and a $14 trillion national debt. we must vote to repeal this provision. in regards to h.r. 1214, swro introduced by representative burgess of texas, who is one of the physician members of our
12:21 pm
republican caucus, it repeals the school-based health center construction fund. obamacare provides $2 million in appropriations through fiscal year 2013 which this legislation would rescind. this money is only for facilities. with an express prohibition on using the funds for personnel or to provide health services at these newly constructed facilities. the facilities could be built with no guarantee, therefore, that the center would ever see or care for one single patient. another example of the wasteful, duplicative spending that cause odd because macare to have such a huge price tag. it's another example of spending we simply cannot afford. obamacare and the stimulus bill have already made $3 billion available to the department of health and human services for facility improvements at community health centers. providing an additional $50 million a year is duplicative. we do not need to build for
12:22 pm
building's sake. therefore we must vote to repeal this provision and with that, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves his time. the gentleman from colorado, mr. polis, is recognized. mr. polis: i thank the gentleman from new york for giving me the cust mir 30 minutes. i understand this is the first rule he's managing on the floor of the house. i congratulate him in that regard. in the 111th regard, -- in the 11th congress, i introduced a number of rule and had a perfect record, never lost a rule. in this congress too, i have a perfect record, i've never won a rule. today while millions of americans are unemployed and millions more await the chance to receive affordable health care, the republicans are spending another week rehashing old debates instead of talking
12:23 pm
about creating jobs. in fact, in this case, undermining americans' access to quality health care. this rule brings forth two bills. first, the majority brings forth under this bill legislation that will prevent americans from accessing the exchanges, which are competitive marketplaces in which to buy private insurance. now, there's a lot of subterfuge and misinformation in this debate. for instance, there's no obamacare option. there is no public insurance option that we are even discussing here. what is being discussed is a marketplace in which individuals, primarily those who work in small businesses or are self-employed, will have access to choose from the private policy of their choice. according to the congressional digit office, under this republican proposal, two million fewer americans will be enrolled in exchanges in 2015.
12:24 pm
the congressional budget office also says that h.r. 1213 will result in higher premiums in the exchange. again, a bill that is delivering higher premiums for american citizens. hardly, hardly the outcry i have heard on the stump. i had the chance to have public meetings in the last two weeks back in my district as many members of congress have. my constituents, mr. speaker, did not request that we deliver higher health insurance premiums. they wanted us to deal with the deficit. they wanted us to deal with jobs and the economy. not a single constituent of mine asked for higher health insurance premiums, which seems to be a priority of this congress. now, there may be a talking point involved and certainly a repeal of both of these bills today were included in h.r. 3, a repeal of health care reform largely, now we're looking at
12:25 pm
individual bits and pieces, but this new marketplace has historically been an idea with strong bipartisan support. to have competitive health care exchanges to keep intact america's health care system and helping those in small businesses and self-employed. it represents the opportunity for a more competitive and more transparent marketplace that allows americans to make the choice between private insurers. the other bill brought forth under this particular rule, after we have dispensed with denying health care to an estimated two million more americans through the exchanges, we are also in this bill, eliminating funding for school based health center construction. that would harm our services, especially for children, youth and families. school-based health care
12:26 pm
clinics serves students whose access to health care is limited an frequently the scope of services is determined by school officials in partnership with parents and community 46 based health care initiatives. services are to provide options early, provide continuity of care and improve academic participation. these programs save money by providing access to preventive care that eludes many of the families affected. yet also while we are denying basic preventive care to our nation's youth, the passage of this bill will deny job opportunities to americans all over the country who are ready with shovel-ready projects to begin improving and building school-based health care clinics. here we are dealing with a bill, less jobs, less health care, less education, hardly the priorities i think the voters wanted for the 110 -- the 112th congress.
12:27 pm
democrats believe we need to make tough choices to end the climbing spiral of debt. what we're left with in these two bills, separate from h.r. 3, is the worst of both world. republicans leave in place the taxes used to pay for health care reform they leave in place the medical device tax and the tax on unearned income, yet remove the benefits to the american people from these taxes. whenever the american people agree to any degree of tax, they want to see a tangible result. what's being done in these bills is leaving in place the taxes but removing the benefit of health care reform. that's hardly a balanced and fair approach and it's one the house should reject. i remind my colleagues of house resolution 9, which i supported on the floor of the house of representatives. it dealt with 13 items out of
12:28 pm
the jurisdiction of the rules committee, before the gentleman joined the rules committee. we instructed the house on replacing health care reform and some areas for working on would be. i'd like to submit to the record in the context of this debate, mr. speaker, house resolution 9. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. polis: which was adopted by the house and indeed discusses changing existing health care law within the various committees of jurisdiction to foster economic growth and private sector job creation to lower health care premiums, reserve a patient's ability to keep their health care plan, provide people with pre-existing conditions affordable access to health care and many, many other good ideas. rather than discussing any of these 13 points continued in house resolution 9, the business of the committees of jurisdiction has apparently been not only to repeal health care reform generally but now to repeal each of the individual exeents while leaving the tax -- components
12:29 pm
while leaving the taxes in place. we encourage the committees to comply with house resolution 9. it sends a powerful message that instead of just talking about repeal, repeal, repeal, we need to talk about replace. what are we going to do to provide affordable health care. if we repeal support for the exchanges, how are we fostering economic growth? how are we encouraging small businesses and self-employed people to have health care access at the same prices large companies have. i call on my colleagues to begin the discussion of how to improve health care reform, finding the common ground between both parties to help reduce the deficit. i reserve the balance of my time.
12:30 pm
the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from colorado reserves. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. reed: i yield to the chairman of the rules committee, mr. dreier, for such time as he may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. dreier: thank you very much, mr. speaker. let me begin by extending congratulations to my good friend from corning for his stellar management of his first rule on the house floor and to say we have managing this two of my favorite members, including my friend from boulder who serves on the rules committee with such distinction. i have to say that i'm also glad to see we have dr. roe here who has over the past couple of years regailed us in the rules committee of the failures of massive, even state government involvement in health care and the dramatic increases in costs he's seen in his state of tennessee because of the so-called tenncare program. i know we look forward to
12:31 pm
hearing from him later. let me respond, as the author of h.res. 9, to the comments that my friend from boulder has just offered, mr. speaker. . first, i want to say that the measures before us are all about job creation and economic growth, improving health care and improving education. all three of the things that my friend from boulder indicated he doesn't believe that we are successfully addressing here. second, i have to say that as we look at the litany of those 13 items, included within h.res. 9, mark my words, the committees of jurisdiction are already working on those priority items. i believe that the purchase health insurance across state lines needs to be a very high priority as we want to ensure that the american people have access to quality health care. we need to make sure we have pooling to deal with
12:32 pm
pre-existing conditions. that continues to be a bipartisan priority and across state lines and obviously on pooling for pre-existing conditions, president obama, even though we opposed it in the measure, has indicated his support of those items. we need to expand medical savings accounts so that people can be incentivized to put dollars aside for the purpose of direct health care needs and/or health insurance. we also need to do what we can to expand something that actually passed the republican house of representatives but was killed by our colleagues in the other body five years ago. that is associate health plans. allow for small business, men and women to come together and actually get reduced rates as larger corporations and entities have done. and the fifth item that, of course, we heard the president of the united states say in his state of the union message he supported but of course was not included in the measure and
12:33 pm
that is real meaningful lawsuit abuse reform because we continue to see the dramatic increase in health care costs because of the number of frivolous lawsuits out there and we have a load of impeercal evidence on that, mr. speaker -- imperical evidence on that, mr. speaker. the president of the united states stood here and talked about how important it was to deal with it and yet we haven't. those are five among the 13 items that was addressed in h.res. 9. i say the the committees of jurisdiction are working on that. why are we here today? we did pass the repeal measure out of the house of representatives. we felt very strongly that the need to focus on some of the most flagrant examples of abuse by passing legislation out of this house needs to continue to be a priority and that's exactly what we're doing today. now, i don't like the use of the word slush fund to be turned around. it makes me a little
12:34 pm
uncomfortable, i have to admit, but that is a term that's been used by more than a few people to describe the funds that are granted, such funds as may be necessary and open-ended without congressional oversight to the secretary of health and human services. and it seems to me that one of the things we need to recognize in a bipartisan way that enhancing congressional oversight of the executive branch is an institutional issue. we have a responsibility to the american people to make sure that we scrutinize every tax dollar that is being expended, and this legislation is designed to deal with one of the major flaws in the health care bill. that being the granting without congressional oversight of such funds as may be necessary. and similarly, if you look at the expansion in every way of expenditures which are not going to do anything to improve the quality of health care in this country, seems to me this
12:35 pm
is the right thing for us to do. now procedurally, i know that my friend joins me. i'm not going to ask him to join, as mr. dicks has repeatedly in the past in complimenting the work of the rules committee that allows for great deliberation, but these two items before us are in fact making in order every single amendment that was submitted to the rules committee that is germane, complies with cut-go, does not waive the rules of the house. we have amendments submitted. one of these is a modified open rule, every member of the house has an opportunity, if they submit it to the congressional record, if it complies with the rules of the house, they'll get it in this measure. five were made in order. the other seven did not comply with the rules of the house. whether nongermane or did not comply with the cut-go rule
12:36 pm
that was put in place at the beginning of this congress. and so what we've done properlyly under this rule that my friend from corning, mr. reed, is managing is we are, mr. speaker, providing for a chance for a free-flowing debate which speaker boehner indicated before the election last year, was absolutely essential for us to do. and so these are commitments that were made to the american people throughout the election process. they sent a very strong message by sending 87 new members of the house on the republican side. nine members on the democratic side. 96 newly elected members to the house of representatives that their message was to deal with this issue, ensuring americans have access to quality health care but don't expand the federal government's involvement in it and ensure that since we had bills dropped on us in the middle of the night, one very famous one, the cap and trade bill, a 300-page amendment given to us that no one had seen at 3:00 in the morning as the measure was
12:37 pm
being reported out. they said read the bill. they said make sure that you have a degree of accountability and transparency in your deliberations. and i will say, mr. speaker, that if you look at what's happened in the last four months we have had more amendments considered, more debate. just take -- just take the beginning of our continuing resolution when we had 200 amendments debated here on the house floor, 90 hours of debate. more member involvement than we had in the entire four years of the last speakership. and so, mr. speaker, we today are on the right track in a very, very responsible, transparent and open way. we are addressing an issue that the american people said they wanted us to address. and so our priority with this legislation is to ensure that every american has access to quality, affordable health care. that's something we want to make happen, and i believe that the legislation that is before us today will enhance our
12:38 pm
chance to do that as we seek to reduce the size, scope, reach and control of this behemoth our federal government which has a $14 trillion debt and with one of these measures we are going to be saving $14 billion, a very important step in the direction which both democrats and republicans alike say they want us to achieve. so i urge support of the rule and with that yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california yields back. the gentleman from new york reserves. the gentleman from colorado is recognized. mr. polis: mr. speaker, the gentleman from california, again, identified several areas where there's opportunities for both parties to work together, allowing the sale of insurance across state lines. pooling individuals. reforming the medical liability system. again, it goes to the question, if we are in fact repealing in part or all various parts of the health care reform, what is replacing it? when we talk about pooling
12:39 pm
high-risk individuals, if we can put together a way of doing that, that can effectively serve as a marketplace or as an exchange. what this bill simply does is repeal the support of the exchanges leaving those with pre-existing conditions, particularly those who work for small businesses or who are self-employed entirely in the work. as we discuss how to improve health care for the american people, it's critical to actually have the solution of the policy problem that's been identified. the gentleman talked about inadequate selection process with regard to the use of the funds, inadequate congressional oversight. what about talking about setting the right process in place to talk about the oversight of the use of these funds? there's a question of making it work for the american people. with that i'm proud to yield two minutes to my colleague from maryland, ms. edwards. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from maryland, ms. edwards, is recognized for two minutes. ms. edwards: thank you, mr. speaker, and thank you to the gentleman from colorado for yielding. you know, here we are. we're at month five and i
12:40 pm
thought we'd be talking about job creation and spurring economic development across this country. instead, you know, we're yet again talking about how we can repeal elements of the health care bill that passed sometime ago. nonetheless, today i rise in opposition to the rule and to the underlying bill. let me just say first words about the exchanges. in my state of maryland, our governor, martin o'malley, working with the legislature, is trying to make this work, implementing the health insurance exchanges in the state to make sure that people don't fall through the cracks. in fact, our secretary of health has come out with a study, by implementing and going through this process and implementing the exchange and moving through reform, we're going to create jobs and provide health care for thousands and thousands of people across the state of maryland and to our small businesses who want to do right by their employees by providing
12:41 pm
health care. and so i don't understand what the problem is here, and i'm a bit confused. on the one hand the majority doesn't want to pursue a public option for millions who are uninsured. and on the other hand, they don't want to make a marketplace, which is what these exchanges are, available to people to get health care in their states. and so you cannot have it both ways unless you want to continue to lead millions and millions -- leave millions and millions of people uninsured and without health care. in the underlying bill, as well, the majority proposes to eliminate funding without any act to construct, renovate at school day health centers. the elimination of these funds would mean very specific. the centers at fairmont high school, one of the poorest communities in our district without a health center. northwestern high school, boxin hill high school, broad acres
12:42 pm
elementary school, serving very needy communities. mr. polis: i yield the gentlelady an digsal 30 seconds -- an additional 30 seconds. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized. ms. edwards: it has wellness checks and mental health services for people, care they wouldn't receive otherwise or maybe they would in an expensive emergency room visit in a crisis. and the studies show the link between health care and affordable health care for our students and their education success. and so i would urge my colleagues to oppose this legislation. let's create jobs instead of dismantling a health care system. with that i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back. the gentleman from colorado reserves. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. reed: mr. speaker, at this time i'm pleased to yield 4 1/2 minutes to the gentleman from tennessee, mr. roe. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from tennessee is recognized for 4 1/2 minutes. mr. roe: i thank the gentleman for yielding, mr. speaker. i rise today in support of the
12:43 pm
rule, the underlying bills, and i'd like to draw particular attention to h.r. 1213 which would repeal a provision in the health care law that gives the secretary of health and human services an unlimited spending authority with regard to state-based exchange. and let me start by saying three years ago, two years ago when i came to congress i looked at the american health care system and said what's the problem with it and the problem with the american health care system is it costs too much money. it's too expensive to go to the doctor, go to the hospital to receive medical care. if it was affordable we could all have it. number two, we have a segment of our population who didn't have access to affordable health care coverage. lates say a dry wall or sheet -- and they get along just fine but they couldn't afford the high premiums. and number three, we have a liability crisis in this country that's forcing the cost of health care through the roof.
12:44 pm
well, what did the affordable health care plan do? it did do number two. it expanded coverage for some people in this ,500-page bill. remember, it's this thick. but it did nothing to help curve the cost and forcing the liability of health insurance coverage higher for all of us. i've seen it in my home state of tennessee. this enactment of legislation we're talking about today will take off $14 billion that we don't have. let me just say this. what worries me about washington, d.c., is we don't get the memo. we're broke here. and number two, that $14 billion is going to do what? it's not going to put one more patient in my office that i can see. it's going to the bureaucracy. i see it in education. i see it in commerce. i see the federal government just getting large are and larger and larger. the money actually doesn't get down to a patient that i can write a prescription to and they can go to the pharmacy and get filled and get their health
12:45 pm
care for. so we talk about several simple things that the chairman spoke about very eloquently. let me show you an example. i have a health savings account. this little card right here is a debit card. i don't have to fool with the insurance company. i don't have to fool the with the federal government. i don't have to fool with anybody. i fool with me and my doctor. and who should be making health care decisions are patients and their decisions, not an exchange and not all of this. that's just going to complicate things. i go in with this, i pay for it and i normally get a significant discount when i do. remember, 2,500-page bill, mr. speaker. 2,500 pages. you could have done 2/3 with it with two paragraphs. one is simply leave children, and which i agree with this that's in the bill. pick your age, 25, 26, 27, can stay on their parent's plan. number two, simply sign up people who are already eligibility for government programs. that's schip and medicaid. you do those two things, you
12:46 pm
can cover nearly 20 million people without this complex, almost incomprehensible bill. and we have a -- we have a secretary who really has a fungible account that she can spend billions of dollars that are really unaccounted for and we are knee deep in red ink. that's the problem of granting the secretary of this access to the federal treasury. . the first step of washington bureaucrats getting control of our health care system. i am absolutely for consumer choice. i think consumer-driven health care is the only way to get costs down. without that, i think you'll never get costs going in the right direction. instead, this creates a top-down mandate for the types of insurance available. when you're looking at this affordable health care act that the government decides, not you, the patient, not the doctor, not you as an individual, but the government
12:47 pm
decides what's an adequate health care plan. not you as a person. these exchanges basically are just an excuse for unelected washington bureaucrats to make our health care decisions for us. mr. speaker, this is not a free market system. it's basically central planning. patients should be allowed to choose which benefits they want when buying their insurance plan. by passing h r. 1213, the congress would send a message that we want health care reform that puts patients first. another couple of things that are very simple to lower the cost of health care. number one -- may i have another 30 seconds? mr. reed: i yield another minute. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for an additional minute. mr. roe: it is difficult to cover people in small businesses no question about that. so oh, health plans allow you to do that. to group and become large groups. a second thing you can do that really is so simple, i don't know why we haven't done it. i spent a year when i was
12:48 pm
running for congress, after i left my medical practice, i had to buy an individual health care policy, it was very expensive. many individuals in small businesses or work on farms do the same thing. not only could you have an association health plan but number two as an individual you could have allowed me to deduct my health premiums like a big business does, like a huge corporation does and you would have lowered my cost by 35% and made insurance more affordable. so there are many things we could do, this is not what we should be doing. i would urge a vote for the rule and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from tennessee yields back. the gentleman from new york reserves. the gentleman from colorado is recognized. mr. polis: i yield myself 30 seconds to respond briefly. in the minority report from the committee it discusses the oversight of the exchanges, specifically the government accountability office is required to review the
12:49 pm
operation of the exchanges and in addition, not one, not two but three congressional committees, the energy and commerce and government oversight committees and others provide eversight. again, if there's additional oversight, why are we not discussing the bill that provides additional oversight? we all want this money to be spent correctly and well. with that, i'm proud to yield three minutes to the gentlewoman from texas, ms. jackson lee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized for three minutes. ms. jackson lee: i thank the distinguished speaker. mr. speaker, this is an open dialogue with the american people through their members of congress. i thank the gentleman from colorado and i thank the manager of the majority. but this is an open dialogue. to my good friend from tennessee who may not have read the bill, the affordable care act and missed the fact that
12:50 pm
health savings accounts are allowed. no one is blocking anyone and are considered sufficient under that bill. if you desire to have an affordable savings account, health savings account, so be it. but really those savings account adhere to those who are more wealthy and endowed with finances. what these repeal bills will do, both h.r. 1213 and h.r. 1214, and i was hoping the rule committees would have voided these bills and not allowed them to go forward, they did not. i thank them for the amendment they gave me and the respect they gave me in the time we were before that committee but the fact is that the exchanges are to allow those who do not have means to get into an open market. the same thing that our republican friends have been talking about to allow people to go across state lines to buy the cheapest policy that they can for families that have the sickest of the sick, children
12:51 pm
that are disables, others in need, who heretofore have been blocked. by the way, the affordable care act a takes away the bar of anyone who has a pre-existing condition such as pregnancy from not being able to get insurance. what is wrong with that? by the way, the congressional budget office said if we repeal these provisions, the premiums of the american people, the farmer, the small business, will go up, not down. what more common sense can you have as a reason for voting against these bills and voting against the rule? 1214 has to do with school-based clinics. that's ain innovative concept. as a member of the homeland security committee, we have begun to think of schools as a site for individual, they're built in the new structure, the way they're funded to be able to be designed in a way, to ensure that they are secure, as a site for evacuations, a place to go when there is a disaster.
12:52 pm
that means that a school-based clinic that can be part of the community health system would be available in times of emergency. what sense does it make to eliminate the opportunity to improve a community's safety and security in these times of trouble and questioning about terrorism? finding a place where the community could go. i don't know whether there are structures in alabama that could have withstood the horrible tornadoes but we're trying to build schools now to be more safe and secure so both of these bills make no common sense. 1,900 school-based clinics serb our children and their extended pam iflies. do -- and their extended families. do we want a community that's healthy or do we want sick people. mr. polis: i yield the gentlelady 30 seconds. ms. jackson lee: i thank the gentleman for his kindness. that's what these two bills will allow us to become, one to
12:53 pm
ignore those who don't have the resources for health savings accounts, who don't have money in their pockets to say, i'll be able to go out and get insurance base on some kind of account. fine for those who can do it, but i assure you the nation's farmers and small businesses are glad to know their employees can go into an exchange and this that there are tax incentives for them and the nation's single parents, parents making ends meet, will be glad for school-based clinics. vote against the bill and the under-- the rule and the underlying bill. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. reed: i yield one minute to mr. roe, my colleague from tennessee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. roe: i have read the bill. all pages of it. and i must say that says a whole lot about -- i'm not sure that says a lot about my
12:54 pm
intelligence, but i did read the entire health care bill. when you speak of h.s.a.'s being only for wealthy people that's absolutely not correct. in my own practice we have offered both -- 300 people who get insurance through our practice, we offer traditional insurance or h.s.a. and three of four people choose h.s.a. because they make decisions. ms. jackson lee: will the gentleman yield? i thank the gentleman for his correction, then my point would be, is it not ok, then, for your patients to use the health savings account but also ok for those who still may not have the resources to go into an exchange? aren't we trying to do the same thing to make sure everyone of all means can in fact have insurance? mr. roe: reclaiming my time. i think our goal -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired.
12:55 pm
mr. reed: i yield two minutes to mr. roe. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. roe: our goal is to provide affordable health insurance coverage for all americans. there's no question that i would like to see that in my tenure here in this house, in this body. the problem we have is how do you get there? i think the democratic side is to expand bureaucracy, government control. ipab is an x., i think that's a terrible idea. it is a terrible idea. we want to do that. i know there's a way to do it and again to hold the cost down. that's the problem. and the gentlelady from texas made a point that insurance premiums would go up. insurance premiums are going up in anticipation of this particular health plan. why? the government decides what you must have. you don't get to make that decision yourself. that's done by a bureaucrat. it's done by congress or whoever decides what's in this plan. i'll give you an depample.
12:56 pm
i don't need in my family fertility coverage at my age. i have three grown children that are raised, educated, have health insurance, good jobs. but i probably will have to have that because that's what a plan that someone else will decide what i need to have fertility coverage. there are things in those bills that i don't need to have personally that i should be able to pick out and i'm just one example. people across this country ought to be making those decisions, not the federal government and not a bureaucrat. ultimately what's going to happen in our health care system is, because resources are finite, is that care will be rationed. is the government going to ration it? or is the patient and doctor going to make those health care decisions? i trust the patient and doctor to make those health care decisions. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from new york reserves. the gentleman from colorado is recognized. mr. polis: i yield myself 30
12:57 pm
seconds, to say the republicans are against the government omings, against the exchange option, so the only option left is to pay more. i yield three and a half minutes to my colleague from california, mr. garamendi. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for three and a half minutes. mr. gare member dee: i guess -- mr. garamendi: i guess i don't understand. i don't understand what our republican colleagues want to accomplish here. they talk about free market and the need to provide options and opportunities. i think that's exactly what an exchange does. so i don't quite understand what this is all about. i was elected insurance commissioner in california in 1991 and we set up an exchange. unfortunately, governor wilson vetoed it, otherwise we'd have had this exchange years ago. a year and a half ago, the california legislature with the signature of a republican
12:58 pm
governor, schwarzenegger, created an exchange. based upon the affordable health care act. it was a year ago. they want to put it into effect. the republican proposal here on the floor would make it impossible for california to do what it wants to do, that is, set up a marketplace in which people have access to insurance. the notion being that by creating the exchange, you spread the risk over many, many different populations. so that like a huge corporation, you have an opportunity as an individual purchaser or a small business to participate in a large pool and accept the lower rate of insurance. so what's this all about? what are you trying to accomplish here? is it some ideology that you just simply can't stand the affordable health care act and want to rip it apart piece by piece? apparently so. you don't want to stop there.
12:59 pm
you're going after medicare. a program that's been in effect for 42 years. that provides a universal insurance policy to anyone over 65. you're going to terminate medicare. what's that all about? and give it to an insurance company and not have an exchange? so what's an individual going to do when they're 65 and possessing all kinds of pre-existing conditions. go without insurance? be at the mercy of the insurance company? by the way, you want to repeal all the insurance reforms. all of the protections. that individuals have in the affordable health care act. doesn't make much sense to me. i don't understand what your goal is here, except maybe to have some political scorecard, you can say, yeah, we repealed the affordable health care act, good for us. but what affect -- effect on the citizens of america. no exchanges, they're gone. no opportunity for small

59 Views

info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on